The State Government will inject $7.5 million into South Australia’s red meat sector in a bid to grow productivity in the industry and further strengthen biosecurity.
This new State Government investment from the Economic and Business Growth Fund will focus on technology adoption, vital infrastructure for growth and measures to enhance biosecurity in the red meat industry.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the funding boost will aim to boost on-farm productivity to increase the number of sheep and cattle that are raised and processed in South Australia.
“The funding announced today will build on the Beef and Sheep Industry Blueprints which highlight enormous opportunities for South Australia to increase farmgate returns and create greater market access,” said Minister Whetstone.
“A key element of this proposal will be a planned roll out of voluntary electronic individual sheep identification readers to increase traceability in the sector.
“This Government wants to support our producers to increase the number of cattle and grow the sheep flock to capitalise on strong market returns.
“The State Government will also be further investing in the One Biosecurity program which has had almost 400 livestock producers join since it was announced last year.
“Biosecurity is at the forefront of the State Government’s agenda to grow agriculture and One Biosecurity aims to provide greater traceability and market advantage for our producers on a world stage.
“We recognise the importance of growing the state’s agriculture sector and the red meat industry will play a vital role by building on our economic strengths.
“The red meat and wool industry is South Australia’s largest manufacturing employer supporting 30,000 jobs.
“Over 11 million sheep, 950,000 head of cattle and 57 million kilograms of wool are produced annually in this state with a total production and processing revenue of $2.4 billion.
“The long-term aim is to increase the amount of quality product available for processing.”
The funding will focus on three areas:
- Improve Productivity: In partnership with industry, private sector and universities, we will consolidate extension programs, demonstrating the value of business planning and data-based decision making to building industry resilience to adverse events.
- Install Infrastructure: funding will stimulate industry and private sector investment in installation of individual animal identification readers and systems for sheep in key saleyards, meat processing facilities and on-farm. The use of this technology will demonstrate benefits to traceability and productivity, accelerating adoption of individual animal identification.
- Enhance Market Access: Funds will be invested in the SA Government’s ‘One Biosecurity’ program, to enhance both the online system and assist in industry take-up.