Strengthening Policy Services in the Cattle Industry

by | Oct 10, 2012

Levy payers and industry bodies have recognized the need for reform of national representation, policy and advocacy functions for the grass-fed cattle industry.

A new report by Inovact Consulting Managing Director Brian Ramsay for the peak representative body for the grass fed cattle industry, the Cattle Council of Australia, provides the basis for industry dialogue and decisions on the changes needed.

During 2012, the Cattle Council of Australia led a process to engage the industry in formulating a new industry strategy, ‘Beef 2015 and Beyond’. Inovact Consulting provided independent advice to CCA on the development of the new industry strategy.

The next phase of the Council’s work is to catalyse dialogue with industry and government on the reforms required to deliver on the new strategy. This report was prepared by Inovact Consulting to:

  1. Inform the Cattle Council of Australia of the broad parameters, options and scope for use of statutory levy funds for policy and related activities;
  2. Identify the policy issues to address and the main operational implications (such as governance and accountability obligations) for an organisation that receives levy funds for strategic policy development activities; and
  3. Provide an informed basis for engaging with the cattle industry and the government in developing workable options for future industry policy, representation and resourcing arrangements.

The report provides a unique and contemporary view of the interplay of public policy and rural industry services in a globalising and market-based economy. It focuses on how rural industries can respond strategically and work in partnership with government to optimise return on investment of industry and public funds. The report provided valued insights for industry leaders and informed thinking on directions for structural reform:

Brian’s advice has helped the Council to design and lead a unifying strategy development and reform process that is unprecedented for the industry in recent times. Brian brings a focus on outcomes and is without question Australia’s ‘go to’ expert in rural industry strategy, development and institutional reform.”

 – David Inall, CEO, Cattle Council of Australia

The report is grounded on Inovact Consulting’s distinctive experience in helping a variety of rural industries adapt to change and achieve dramatic improvements in performance. It reflects insights from Inovact’s work with the National Farmers’ Federation and the pork and horticultural industries.

The grass fed cattle industry is one of Australia’s largest and most valuable agricultural industries. The national cattle herd is over 27m head and generated an off-farm value of meat production of A$11.9b in 2011-12. The industry exported $4.7 billion worth of beef (65% of production) to more than 100 countries, contributing 15% of Australia’s total farm exports in 2011-12.

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