Home > Beef producer calls for federal funding to increase onshore processing

Beef producer calls for federal funding to increase onshore processing

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Jack Burton, owner of the 60,000 head Yeeda Pastoral Company has criticised the government for failing to support investment in onshore processing.

Burton, who is building a $20m abattoir with the capacity to process 50,000 cattle per year, says that further investment in onshore processing will reduce the nation’s dependence on live exports, a move that has been backed by animal welfare groups such as the RSPCA, who claim that the Northern Australian cattle crisis could have been avoided if adequate infrastructure was put in place.

Burton says that he has attempted to contact Federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce for several weeks to discuss the notion of Government funding for an abattoir in the Kimberley, The West reports.

"We are not building a massive abattoir, it is basically for our own use with some other cattle, but now that we have taken it this far it would only take about 25 per cent ($5 million) of the current spend to take the capacity out to 125,000 head and make it a regional facility," said Burton.

"We'd like the Government to put its hand in its pocket to help with that in some way because cash flow is tight and we just don't have that sort of cash.

Burton says that the Nation's recent spying row with Indonesia has created further uncertainty within the live export industry, and that now is the time to invest in new infrustructure. 

"With the industry concerned about wearing some of the fallout from the Indonesian situation, this is a chance for the Government to get behind us but they are still being either non-committal or obstructive."

 Image: Flickr

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