Cattle Australia delivers draft principles of Land Management Commitment

Cattle Australia delivers draft principles of Land Management Commitment.

Thursday, 9 May 2024

Cattle Australia (CA) has today delivered the draft principles of the Land Management Commitment, to underpin a policy position on deforestation for international acceptance.

Set to deliver the draft policy for further engagement with the supply chain on May 26, CA Chief Executive Officer, Dr Chris Parker, said the work seeks to ensure equitable outcomes for all producers.

“This is happening at a time when the supply chain and financial sector are being caught under a broader trend requiring global businesses to publicly disclose the actions they are taking to promote sustainable outcomes for the planet,” Dr Parker said.

“Given the varied ESG compliance requirements we are facing, including biodiversity and natural capital reporting, there is strong urgency to provide a clear pathway to deliver beef products with deforestation-free credentials into our global markets.

“In addition to this, our Australian domestic markets have also made voluntary commitments to international frameworks that require deforestation-free evidence.”

With the European Union Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) set to be implemented from January 1, 2025, Dr Parker cautioned Government and the supply chain against urgently transacting on compliance requirements, which would likely have unintended consequences, and urged a strategic focus during negotiations.

“As it stands, there is no clear definition on deforestation aligned to our Australian land management practices that supports our biodiversity,” Dr Parker said.

“There is also no developed national source of truth that enables a system to facilitate lifetime traceability of our livestock informed by national mapping.

“The Land Management Commitment will provide a voice to our producers and support our supply chain partners in demonstrating the environmental stewardship associated with Australian agricultural practices.

“Done well, this will also bolster our existing industry systems, highlight the sustainability credentials of our commodities, and provide competitive advantage over jurisdictions with poor practices.”

Dr Parker said CA is seeking to lead the way by working with producers, service providers, government officials and supply chain partners to create the commitment.

“CA, along with our funding partners, is seeking equitable outcomes for all producers through this important project,” Dr Parker said.

“The draft principles announced today provide clarity on the fundamentals that are most important for our Australian context about our land management.

“With the support of our consultant, Baringa Partners, CA is now seeking feedback on the seven draft principles.

“Pending the feedback received, the draft principles will be embedded into the draft policy, which will be open for consultation from May 26.”

The draft policy principles set out below outline the nuances of a required definition:

  1. This will be a voluntary standard, developed by industry for industry, with the intention of empowering producers to make informed decisions.  
  2. Reflects the Australian ecosystem, in that the final Land Management Commitment will reflect the unique landscapes and land management practices that exist in Australia.
  3. Promoting producer economic outcomes will be the primary guiding principle informing decision-making as the Land Management Commitment is developed. 
  4. The Land Management Commitment will lean on existing State, Territory and Federal definitions, legislation, and measurement/ monitoring systems where possible, and be simple to implement. 
  5. In developing this body of work, we are collaborating with the supply chain and financial sector to enable all parties to leverage an industry-agreed definition and common method of verification, consistently applied by all parties. This will avoid a scenario of multiple definitions creating confusion and burden for producers.
  6. A single traceability system – to support producers in demonstrating alignment to the commitment, we will utilise existing industry systems. This will also provide a single engagement point for producers to ensure accurate representation of their land and management activities.
  7. A make-good mechanism to provide direction regarding compliance and any remediation of historic land management practices, where required, to ensure producers are not excluded on the basis of past management activities.

ENDS

MEDIA ENQUIRIES:

Hayley Kennedy
hayley.kennedy@bluehillpr.com.au
0488 021 154

Stacey Wordsworth
stacey.wordsworth@bluehillpr.com.au
0438 394 371

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Garry Edwards

Managing Director and CEO, Maureen Pastoral Company

Garry was born and raised on a commercial beef cattle property south of Gloucester in New South Wales. Garry has personal cattle production interests in this region today as well as his corporate role as the Managing Director and CEO of AAM, a business that has a significant focus in continuing to expand beyond our cattle production interests in Central West NSW, near Forbes and Bective Station near Tamworth, NSW.

Garry has over 25 years’ experience in large scale livestock production management within the Australian agribusiness sector. His experience spans across a vast array of areas of the agricultural supply chain and includes managing businesses involved in livestock breeding, growing and finishing, financing of agricultural projects, implementation of precision agriculture practices, investigation and implementation of sustainability and innovation initiatives and developing and operating integrated agricultural businesses.

In 2007, Garry founded the company that today is AAM, commencing the development, operation and management of a portfolio of agricultural assets valued at $887 million and he remains the major shareholder of AAM.

Garry has a unique skill set across multiple facets of the grass-fed cattle production supply chain, from production through to finishing, as well as a unique perspective of the challenges facing all grass-fed producers within Australia through his involvement in the modernisation and development of livestock marketing facilities throughout Victoria, NSW and Queensland.

George King

Managing Director, The Whitney Pastoral Co and Manager, "Coombing Park"
George is a seventh generation Australian farmer, currently managing his family property which they have held since 1880. George operates an Angus breeding and finishing operation joining 1,500 cows per year, with a low-cost model turning off steers at feeder weights and direct sales of females.

George has long been on a regenerative agriculture path as it was the only way he could see to renovate their property 25 years ago without employed equity or working capital, which at the time they didn’t have. He continues with this model as it provides outstanding cost containments, continued production and profitability.

George is married with four (4) children, Harry 24, Emma 22, Dave 15 and Tom 13. He also enjoys flying and has his pilot’s license.

George is also a Founding Director of The Wellness House and a Founding Director of ONFARM CO. He has a strong voluntary involvement with his community including as the NSW Rural Fire Services Senior Dept Capt. and Chairman of St Paul’s Carcoar.

Bryce Camm

Grazier, camm agricultual group

Bryce Camm hails from Dalby in Queensland’s Darling Downs region where he oversees his family’s company Camm Agricultural Group; an integrated beef and cropping enterprise with interests across Queensland.

Bryce has been CEO of the group for the past eight years. Prior to that he was the Manager of the group’s award winning Wonga Plains Feedlot for eight years where he oversaw the operation triple in size. Growing up on “Natal Downs” Station in north Queensland Bryce undertook a dual degree in Business Administration and Communications at Bond University and is a graduate of the Australian Rural Leadership Program as well as the Australian Institute of Company Directors Course.

Bryce is currently the Chairman of Beef Australia Ltd and the Immediate Past President of the Australian Lot Feeders Council, as well as a previous Director of the Red Meat Advisory Council. 

Elke Cleverdon

Owner and Director, Cleverdon Agriculture - Grass Fed Black Angus

Elke is an experienced non-executive director in the agribusiness and customer-owned banking sector with a passion for member-centric organisations. She brings a grower perspective coupled with her genuine drive to elevate the industry through innovation. She was selected to the National Farmers Federation ‘Diversity in Ag Leadership’ 2022, among 12 women nationally. 

Elke has a broad background in the agricultural industry as a producer and rural financial coach across regional NSW challenging business models & production systems for growers across a wide range of commodities. Elke is a joint owner & director of a broad acre family cattle farm at Harden NSW since 1993. Cleverdon Ag raises & trades black Angus cattle  

Elke brings a wealth of financial, risk management and governance experience. Her current non-executive director roles include Local Land Services (NSW), Murrumbidgee Health (NSW Health) and SWS Credit Union. Some of her many strengths is a strong focus on strategy, risk and a triple bottom line while chairing large scale audit & risk committees  


David Foote

Director - Tandarra Partners

Nominated by: Peter Hall, Troy Setter, Bryce Camm, David Hill, Adam Coffey 

For the past 45 years, David has held rural property management, executive and senior management positions across all mainland states in areas of; beef cattle & sheep breeding, growing and lot feeding, meat retailing, small seed growing, irrigated fodder, and the further processing and exporting of primary products such as meat, grain and fodder.

His export experiences which started in 1989 included a role with Stanbroke Pastoral Company to help develop Stanbroke’ s Live cattle export program. Additionally, David managed the integration of Bottle Tree feedlot grain feeding in the production system while developing and launching their now globally recognised Diamantina beef brand.

David has been in a leadership role at the Lee Family’s, Australian Country Choice group of Companies since 1999 and progressed in that time from General Manager Properties & Livestock to Group Managing Director until stepping back in December 2020 from a full time role to a strategic advisory and board role.

Headquartered in Brisbane and employing over 1,400 staff across 42 operations, Australian Country Choice (ACC) operates Australia’s largest vertically integrated beef supply chain; encompassing cattle breeding, cattle growing and feedlotting to supply its integrated food processing facility in Brisbane that incorporates beef slaughter, beef boning, value-adding and case ready beef packing.

ACC’s cattle property portfolio of around 4 million acres in Queensland & NSW encompasses operations from the Barkly Tableland, CQ coalfields, Carnarvon ranges, Augathella, Blackall, Roma, and Moonie districts of Queensland, with a carrying capacity of 300,000 head. of cattle to support the Company’s 3 feedlots.

Additionally, David represents Agricultural & Cattle industry interests in his role as; Non-Government member Australia­ Indonesia Red Meat & Cattle Partnership, member SmartSat CRC, member Cattle Australia -Policy Council, member Australian Meat Industry Council -China & Halal Trade Groups, Chair Workplace Health & Safety Queensland -Rural Industry Sector Standing Committee, Deputy Chair Laguna Bay Pastoral investment committee and Board Member lnventia Genetic Technologies (IGT). 

Away from work David has a small cattle property in the Mt Kilcoy (Qld) district running Charolais & Charbray breeders to the delight of his four grandchildren.

David wishes to continue into a second term to help build a strong and successful Cattle Australia to represent the interest of all cattle producers