Herald Sun

New push for boxed meat

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AUS­TRALIAN Agri­cul­tural Com­pany’s shift to­wards ex­port­ing pack­aged meat will cush­ion it from the fall­out from In­done­sia’s mas­sive cut to live cat­tle im­ports, the com­pany says.

In a shock move, In­done­sia has re­duced the quota of live cat­tle im­ports to 50,000 this quar­ter, down from 250,000 in the same pe­riod a year ago.

AACo’s trans­for­ma­tion from a cat­tle pro­ducer to a boxed meat ex­porter has cre­ated a more ro­bust busi­ness, it said at its an­nual meet­ing in Bris­bane yesterday.

“As In­done­sia’s re­cent de­ci­sion to re­duce live cat­tle im­ports demon­strates, prod­uct and mar­ket di­ver­sity is im­por­tant,” AACo chair­man Don­ald McGauchie said.

Since Aus­tralia tem­po­rar­ily banned live cat­tle ex­ports to In­done­sia in 2011, AACo has been grow­ing its busi­ness in the boxed beef mar­ket.

The com­pany spent $91 mil­lion build­ing the Liv­ing­stone Beef abat­toir in Dar­win.

AACo man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Jason Strong said the vol­ume of cat­tle pro­cessed at the plant was pro­gres­sively in­creas­ing to meet de­mand.

Boxed beef sales ac­counted for 77 per cent of group rev­enue in the 2015 fi­nan­cial year, up from 59 per cent in fis­cal 2014. Wagyu beef ac­counted for 52 per cent of its boxed beef rev­enue.

AACo shares shed half a cent to $1.345.

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