Highlights from Beef Week

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Ellen Litchfield was sponsored by the SA Arid Lands Community to attend Beef Week in Queensland, held in May 2018. Ellen shares the highlights of her attendance at this premier, triennual, industry event.

Beef week 2018 truly was a global event with attendees from Argentina, Brazil, United States and many more beef production hotspots there to experience the action packed program. It was held over five days in Rockhampton, Queensland with over a 100,000 people coming through the gates.

Over the five days there is cattle judging, educational seminars, celebrity chefs, hundreds of exhibits and also a great place to network with other people in the beef industry.

A highlight of my trip to Beef week was witnessing the launch of the beef sustainability framework, this is the Australian beef industry’s first annual update of the framework, which aims to ensure the longevity and prosperity of the beef industry.

The framework highlights six key priority areas that the industry will focus on over the next 12 months to develop policy and guidelines to ensure they are sustainable.

1. Animal Husbandry techniques
2. Profitability Across Value Chain
3. Balance of Tree and Grass Cover
4. Antimicrobial Stewardship
5. Managing Climate Change Risk
6. Health and Safety of People in the Industry

There were a range of property tours each day to allow spectators to see how other production systems are run. I attended the Belmont Research station property tour, on the tour we witnessed demonstrations of virtual fencing, walk over weighing and automatic drafting technology, this was a great experience to see how it can be applied.

I plan to share this information back home with other local producers as I think utilising innovative technologies is really important to our industry. I also won three GPS cattle tracking collars through a research proposal I submitted to CQ university whilst at beef week. The GPS collars will be used to gain a greater understanding on the difference in grazing patterns between individual animals.

- Ellen Litchfield