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The South Australian Beef Industry Blueprint

The South Australian Beef Industry Blueprint seeks to position the industry to capture the benefits that exist in growing demand for premium beef.

For cattle producers and the wider value chain to fully benefit from increasing global demand our industry must be able to sustain consistent supply of highly credentialed product year-round. The Blueprint has been developed with input from across the value chain. It contains ambitious productivity and revenue targets. Moreover, the Blueprint details actions required over the next decade to ensure the SA beef value chain can sustainably increase revenue.

The SA beef industry makes a crucial contribution to the state and underpins substantial economic activity in our regions. Recent seasons and prices have been broadly favourable. In 2016-17 farm-gate cash incomes were the highest in 20 years supported by high prices. More than 1-in-5 farms recorded a rate of return on assets under management of greater than 5%. Despite record farmgate returns the SA beef industry faces several significant challenges. Firstly, there are nearly 240,000 fewer beef cattle in SA than five years ago and some 140,000 fewer breeding stock. As an industry we need to re-build our breeding herd and improve productivity. This will enable sufficient supply of stock year-round to allow for efficient processing of cattle and marketing of premium beef products.

The development of the Blueprint has been led by industry, with support from a dedicated 24-person Working Group with experience spanning the value chain. The directions and strategy detailed in the Blueprint have been informed through extensive regional and small group content.

More than 120 producers and industry stakeholders have directly contributed ideas and priorities to the Blueprint. The strategies and actions detailed in the Blueprint recognise the critical importance of the consumer and consistently meeting their requirements. This requires understanding consumer and community expectations for product quality, integrity, value, environmental stewardship and ethical production. Most importantly, we must have production systems and value chains that meet the expectations and effectively communicate total value chain integrity.

It is apparent that increasing production of premium beef is not without challenges. The predicted impacts of climate change on feedbase, enterprise productivity and gross margins are significant. As an industry, productivity improvements are essential to stay ahead of the cost price squeeze and the effects of a variable climate.

Improved feedbase, finishing systems and cost-effective management strategies will be crucial to ensuring ongoing supply of high quality beef.

Major contributors to the Blueprint include Livestock SA, who initiated the development of the Blueprint. Core funding for the development and initial implementation of the Blueprint has been provided by University of Adelaide’s Davies Research Centre and Primary Industries and Regions SA. Funding from the Building Better Regions Fund has enabled highly informative analysis of the SA beef industry productivity and performance which has informed Blueprint targets and actions.

Read the SA Beef Industry Blueprint

Download the SA Beef Industry Blueprint

Details: Please direct queries to Livestock SA blueprint@livestocksa.org.au

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