Rural Press Club: Beef industry must drive sustainability

Mark Phelps
By Mark Phelps
Updated May 10 2022 - 4:23am, first published April 29 2022 - 8:00am

THE beef industry has been encouraged to seize the reins on the increasingly important issue of sustainability or risk having unrealistic controls placed upon it.

Speaking at the Rural Press Club in Brisbane on Friday, Australian Beef Sustainability Framework chair Mark Davie said sustainability targets were pressing down on the industry and the industry needed to develop scientific evidence based solutions.

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Mr Davie, an AgForce Cattle director who runs a Brahman-cross herd on his property at Yeppoon, said the industry needed to be socially, environmentally and economically sustainable to ensure it could feed the world.

"Our industry set a goal for no net release of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere by 2030, and we committed to this in 2017 - well before businesses and governments, which have only really started to set strategies in the past 12 months," Mr Davie said.

"We defined a problem and our obstacles and set about driving research and development to address the challenge, informed by the drivers of industry productivity and cost.

"Because of this initiative we are now leading the global narrative on emissions reduction.

"CN30 is already winning hearts and minds. We must now be even more ambitious, define our goal for vegetation management and resource how we are going to solve this issue in an open and transparent way.

"Very few industries have an opportunity to feed the world and execute a response to global challenges the way beef can.

"We are a carbon sink and we, as an industry, can actively manage the biogenic carbon cycle."

Sponsored by McCullough Robertson, Colliers and Australian Retirement Trust, Mr Davie's address was the first in a special series of Rural Press Club events focused on sustainability.

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