Driving beef sustainability

Driving beef sustainability

The Red Meat Advisory Council has appointed the next Sustainability Steering Group (SSG) to drive the implementation of the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework.

Queensland cattle grain and grass-fed cattle producer, Bryce Camm, will Chair a seven-member group of business leaders from across the beef value chain, including grass fed production, grain fed, processing, marketing and live export.

Independent Chair of RMAC, Mr Don Mackay, said the Expression of Interest (EOI) process was extremely competitive. “We received over 40 EOIs for the steering group from industry leaders, from paddock to plate,” Mr Mackay says.

“It’s great to see grass roots support for the commitment to drive continuous improvement that fosters the right environment for longevity and prosperity in the Australian beef industry.

“The SSG has an outstanding mix of skills, industry sectors and understanding of regional and sector differences Australia-wide to drive sustainability outcomes through the framework.

“We are excited to announce our new sustainability team and look forward to working with them on this key Meat Industry Strategic Plan 2020 initiative.”

Mr Mackay added, “The incoming Chair, Bryce Camm is well known within industry and has demonstrated his leadership and strategic skills within his own business the Camm Group, on the board of ALFA and as Vice President of Beef Australia.”

Mr Camm is passionate about the opportunities sustainability presents to the industry.

“Through our business I’ve seen the changing landscape from Australia’s credentials on areas like animal welfare and environment being taken as a given, to one where proof is being required.

“The first framework report has set up a solid foundation across economic, social, environment and welfare and I’m eager to now lead the next phase to close the data gaps and prioritise industry focus through genuine consultation with our stakeholders,” Mr Camm said.

The newly-appointed Sustainability Steering Group will be responsible for delivering the next steps of the framework as outlined on the framework website, in particular the activities for the incoming group are:

Launch the first-ever ABSF Consultative Committee

  • Prepare plans to improve sustainable production
  • Direct industry service companies to source performance data across industry
  • Deliver the next ABSF Report in May 2018
  • Provide communications leadership on the ABSF and related sustainability matters via RMAC
  • Involve the beef industry from paddock to plate

RMAC welcomed the following successful SSG applicants, being appointed on a skills basis:

  • Bryce Camm: The ABSF Chair is CEO of the Camm Agricultural Group, Vice Chair of Beef Australia Limited and a member of the Executive of the Australian Lot Feeders Council; he was the Rabobank Emerging Leader Award recipient in 2014.
  • Greg Campbell: Retiring CEO of S. Kidman & Co; Greg started with Kidman as Landcare manager in 1993 before becoming chief executive in 2001; strong interests in production – both landscape and cattle management, included several years on the National Farmers Federation Natural Resources Committee.
  • Jim Cudmore: Led the initial review of how the Australian beef industry should promote its sustainability credentials which was the precursor to this group being formed. A well-respected industry contributor with experience in extensive and intensive livestock production. Jim sat on the first SSG who developed the framework.
  • Tony Hegarty: New South Wales cattle producer with a focus on natural resource management and almost 30 years’ involvement in the Landcare movement. Tony sat on the first SSG who developed the framework and is also Vice Chair of Cattle Council of Australia.
  • Susan McDonald: Hailing from a Cloncurry-based beef producing family, Susan is Managing Director of Super Butcher, a retail group of six stores and online butchers; she is a registered CPA, and most recently was Chief of Staff to the Minister for Natural Resources and Mines in the Queensland Government.
  • Kim McDougall: As General Manager for Livestock at Harvest Road Beef, Kim is responsible for all livestock procurement for WA’s largest export beef processor as well as management of the beef operations as part of the Forrest families Minderoo Station properties in the Pilbara region.
  • Dr Michael Maxwell: Over 20 years’ experience as a consultant and lawyer; focused on regulatory issues, international risk management, corporate/culture governance and product liability issues; legal skills complemented by a scientific research background in pharmacology and toxicology. Michael has a particular focus on the live export industry.

This story was first published in Leading Agriculture Issue 23.

Image: Bryce Camm