Thinking back over 2015, Livestock SA certainly lived up to its tagline … ‘your strong and independent voice for livestock producers’. There has been a raft of issues that we have acted for on behalf of producers. We believe in what we do and know producers do too … as evidenced by the increase in membership to 2657 producers, up from 1906 in December 2014.
– Geoff Power, Livestock SA president
Pest animals are a major problem to many farmers across South Australia. Feral pigs, goats, rabbits, foxes and wild dogs are some common species that have made the most of favourable climatic conditions in recent years. The Sporting Shooters Association of Australia has developed a unique program called SSAA Farmer Assist, designed to provide farmers with easy access to qualified shooters at no cost.
– Matthew Godson, SSAA Farmer Assist coordinator
When it comes to support programs for drought-affected farmers, bank lenders in the South East work on different principles to the comparatively risky farming environments in Queensland and northern New South Wales.
– Jack England, Livestock SA board member
Before the modern award system was introduced on January 1, 2010, there were state and federal awards. Farmers in South Australia were bound by either the Pastoral Industry (South Australia) Award or, if they were members of the South Australian Farmers’ Federation Industrial Association, the (Federal) Pastoral Industry Award 1998.
– Chas Cini is the principal of Mediation and Employment Relations Services
As time goes on, the cost to run essential programs for the livestock industry, such as biosecurity, traceability, R&D, and advocacy, has gone up to the point that the South Australian Cattle Industry Fund is not keeping pace with the increases. Reserves are diminishing and in a couple of years, the fund will not be able to continue its support of current programs.
– Penny Schulz, Livestock SA board member and representative on the SA Cattle Advisory Group
THE South Australian sheep industry has just started work on a plan to drive profitability, innovation and sustainability for the whole industry value chain. The SA Sheep Industry Blueprint is an initiative of Livestock SA and the SA Sheep Advisory Group. It started in February when more than 50 SA sheep industry stakeholders and decision-makers met at a workshop to scope the plan and identify key areas for the industry’s growth and development.
– Allan Piggott, SA Sheep Industry Blueprint chairman
LAST year, Livestock SA was asked to administer the Far North Water Infrastructure Grants Scheme to help drought-affected pastoralists. After applying for the grant, and with permission of the Pastoral Board, we established two new watering points on the western side of the property.
– Tim Williams, Hamilton Station
TWO key reforms are being negotiated at present which will impact farmers who breed working dogs or those who use them in their livestock business including the Code of Practice for the Wellbeing of Dogs and Cats in Breeding Facilities and Dog and Cat Management Act 1995.
– Kay Hocking, Kelpie breeder and Livestock Working Dog Group representative
LIVESTOCK commodity prices have continued to provide some optimism for producers among variable seasonal conditions across the state. At the same time, there has also been a fall in in a couple of key inputs, including fuel and finance costs. With this outlook comes two points to consider – how producers generally are positioning themselves in their marketplace and planning for drought and how those producers who are unfortunately in drought at present are faring in accessing support.
– Steve Radeski, Livestock SA board member and agri-lending manager
I BELIEVE in strong representation for livestock producers in our region and across the state and I think commodity-based groups funded via an industry levy is an acceptable way to ensure this representation exists. But like most farmers, I have a healthy scepticism of how effectively and transparently mandatory industry levies are used. As a levy payer, I felt the best for me to have a say on how our money was being spent was by being a member of Livestock SA.
– Lachlan Grundy, Southern Region vice-chairman and livestock producer, Naracoorte
THE main uncertainty for northern property owners at present is the proposed abolishment of the Pastoral Board and ramifications for producers in dealing with the Native Vegetation Council, Natural Resources SA Arid Lands, Valuer General’s Office and the Pastoral Unit.
– Colin Greenfield, Northern Region chairman
WITH 2000 members across the state, my vision is to ultimately have that number of members in the South East alone. In numbers there is strength and as livestock producers we all have vested interest. I would encourage you all to have conversations with Livestock SA board members and other local producers to drill down on the positive difference we can make in the protection and promotion of our livestock industries.
– Peter Stock, Southern Region chairman
THE way farmers across the State have banded together in the past week to help those affected by the Adelaide Hills’ fires has been nothing short of amazing. In coordinating the fodder donation response, we have distributed 15 semi-trailer loads containing 4000 large round or square bales and 1000 small squares bales, plus donated chaff and horse feed through fodder stores.
– John Mundy, Livestock SA member and fire response fodder coordinator