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Close collaboration with Minister is crucial

LIVESTOCK SA welcomed the appointment of David Basham as the new South Australian Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development last month.

While Livestock SA acknowledges the progress which has been made during the past two years, a high priority is to follow-up on the issues which still need to be addressed in the industry with the new Minister.

Livestock SA will continue to reiterate key policy issues, advocate for legislative reform, help to drive the industry growth agenda and work with the government to support industry development.

One key part of industry development which has driven growth over the last five years – as highlighted in its mid-term review released in June – is the South Australian Sheep Industry Blueprint.

The Blueprint successfully fostered greater coordination and collaboration, while attracting investments for research, development and extension.

The South Australian sheep industry’s production and value grew to $1.8 billion during the implementation of the Blueprint, a figure which continues to rise.

As consultation will soon begin for the new SA Sheep Industry Blueprint, it will be important to ensure there is government support, along with whole value chain participation, for this framework to successfully grow the industry.

The South Australian Beef Industry Blueprint continues to support sustainable growth for the beef industry, focusing on resilient and profitable production systems, efficient value chains which optimise returns, building community and consumer support and developing industry capability and capacity.

Again, government support is required to ensure the Blueprint framework continues to successfully support the industry.

Although former Minister Tim Whetstone was instrumental in the success of the dog fence upgrade project, the construction of the remainder of the fence will also require further support by the new Minister.

Government drought support remains an important focus for South Australian producers, with additional funding essential to extend the On-Farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme.

Access to effective and efficient on-farm water infrastructure such as new tanks and troughs and drilling of new stock water bores can increase producer resilience in future droughts and bushfire conditions.

The development of the new Pastoral Act, which will be released for further consultation this year, will be another important focus for Livestock SA in the coming months.

Livestock SA wants to ensure the new Act will maintain land condition whilst also facilitating industry growth and productivity.

Livestock SA will also be involved in the consultation for the new Biosecurity Act, which aims to provide a simpler and more effective legal framework for the management of pests, disease and weeds, trade in plant and animal products and biosecurity emergencies.

Livestock SA looks forward to working with Minister Basham on the above-mentioned issues and continuing the long-term relationship he has with the industry.

ANDREW CURTIS, Chief Executive Officer, Livestock SA

27 August 2020 Media Type: Column / Policy Area: Industry & Government /