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Australian Cattle Council : Yearbook 2010
YEARBOOK 2010 CATTLE COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA Canberra-based government officials headed out of their offices and into the paddock with the Cattle Council of Australia in October 2009 to gain a grass roots perspective on the big issues facing the Australian beef industry. Over 130 senior decision-makers have participated in Cattle Council's Rural Awareness Tour (RAT) since its inception in 1991, increasing their awareness of our strong and dynamic industry. The RAT provides a practical understanding of beef industry production systems to help Federal Government officials become more aware of 'on--the ground' issues when developing and implementing policy. Employees from the Federal Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF), the Department of Environment and Heritage and the Arts visited seedstocks, commercial cattle and mixed farming properties, feedlots, abattoirs, international meat traders, butchers, supermarkets, saleyards, livestock exporter organizations and tertiary research and teaching facilities over a weeklong cattle industry tour throughout NSW. From the office and into the paddock RURAL AWARENESS TOUR 2009, NEW SOUTH WALES Representatives from AUS-MEAT and Meat and Livestock Australia also attended to meet with producers and expand their knowledge and understanding of the sector and policy issues affecting its profitability. Sam Gunn, Cattle Councillor and NSW Young Farmers' Association chair was the tour's host and welcomed participants onto his family's Poll Hereford Stud 'Murrumbo' in the Upper Hunter Valley. Eating Hereford prime hot off the BBQ with local producers, stock agents, real estate agents and family friends of the Gunns was a highlight for many on tour. Sam noted participants were surprised and inspired by the degree of innovation and sophistication throughout the whole red meat supply chain to deliver a product of integrity. 'Through first hand experience, they had witnessed the production efficiencies throughout the beef supply chain and recognised beef producers as stewards of the land and providers of a high quality product,' Sam Gunn The Australian beef industry is 'adaptable, innovative and resilient' noted one participant coming away from the 2009 Cattle Council Rural Awareness Tour. 'RAT' participants watching cattle be run up the race at 'Murrumbo' cattle yards, Hunter Valley (L-R) Bruce Gormley, AUS-MEAT QLD, Tim Byrne, Meat and Livestock Australia, Sydney and Matt Lieschke, National Residue Survey, DAFF, Canberra overlook the 'Angus Feature Sale' in Walgett (L-R) Shiji Zhao from ABARE tries his hand at preparing scotch fillet for the 'Murrumbo' BBQ with Hereford Prime's Director Dan Morice 34