Sa­le­yard bid knocked back

South Western Times - - News - Zach Relph

A South West live­stock group is locked in a bit­ter show­down with the State Gov­ern­ment over the re­gion’s highly an­tic­i­pated sa­le­yard, main­tain­ing the fa­cil­ity must be es­tab­lished un­der a co­op­er­a­tive model.

As re­ported ear­lier this month, the South West Beef Co­op­er­a­tive’s ex­pres­sion of in­ter­est to man­age the new sa­le­yard was knocked back by the State Gov­ern­ment.

The farm­ing body’s ap­pli­ca­tion, sup­ported by WAFarm­ers, failed to make it to the next stage of the ap­pli­ca­tion process after the five re­spon­dents were slashed to two on De­cem­ber 11.

WAFarm­ers live­stock pres­i­dent David Slade de­scribed the co­op­er­a­tive ap­proach as an “ef­fec­tive model”, sim­i­lar to sys­tems fol­lowed at the Katan­ning and Mt Barker sa­le­yards.

“We were hop­ing the same model could have been adopted for the new South West sa­le­yards and Muchea, given the po­ten­tial im­pact a mo­nop­oly sit­u­a­tion could have for live­stock pro­duc­ers,” he said.

WA Agri­cul­tural Min­is­ter Alan­nah MacTier­nan has re­fused to re­veal which two pri­vate ap­pli­cants have been short-listed since the an­nounce­ment.

While re­main­ing coy on suc­cess­ful re­spon­dents, Ms MacTier­nan re­sponded to con­cerns and said the group’s ap­pli­ca­tion was too de­pen­dent on tax­payer money.

“The group’s ex­pres­sion of in­ter­est re­lied on large amounts of tax­payer fund­ing, which is not ap­pro­pri­ate when a mar­ket so­lu­tion ex­ists and did not meet the selec­tion cri­te­ria,” she said. “In terms of sa­le­yard fees, reg­u­la­tory mea­sures can be used to en­sure fair­ness for all par­tic­i­pants.”

It was ru­moured Bun­bury busi­ness iden­tity Colin Pi­a­cen­tini had made a sub­mis­sion and was one of the two se­lected re­spon­dents.

How­ever, Mr Pi­a­cen­tini, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of earth­mov­ing and min­ing com­pany Pi­a­cen­tini and Son, dis­pelled spec­u­la­tion.

Mr Slade main­tained the pro­posed South West sa­le­yard and Muchea lease should be con­trolled by a co­op­er­a­tive.

“WAFarm­ers do not sup­port the own­er­ship of two ma­jor sa­le­yards be­ing in the hands of one pri­vate com­pany,” he said.

“WAFarm­ers be­lieves a co­op­er­a­tive model will ben­e­fit South West live­stock pro­duc­ers be­cause a farmer-led co­op­er­a­tive has the in­ter­est of live­stock pro­duc­ers front and cen­tre and will keep sa­le­yard fees cost-ef­fec­tive to all par­tic­i­pants.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.