5 September 2023. By AgForce Cattle Board President Peter Hall.

There is much to celebrate in the great network that we have in the red meat industry.


Jostling around with some of the more than 400,000 people who streamed through the gates of this year’s 144th Ekka, was the perfect way to do that.


A highlight for me was the collegiality (and the great spread of food!) at the Ekka’s Agforce Red Meat Dinner.


However that wonderful display was bowing under the weight of terminology that is becoming increasingly combative, such as zero deforestation, deforestation free, and carbon neutral - or even guilt free if you adhere to the ABSF principles.

We are fast becoming apologists catering to the whim of NGO’s and governments around the world, and we need your support for a nature positive statement to our external stakeholders and the members of our industry.


Spreading the word is vital - by explaining how we have moved past the issue of trees and into the holistic management of our natural resources for a sustainable future.


We are on the back foot with other definitions too, such as forest, deforestation, land use change, reforest, afforestation, regrowth and human induced land clearing, as these terms pitch us against external forces that can use these terms of trade and climate justification against us.


We are at risk of becoming an environmental sink for the rest of the world with regrowth building in popularity as a viable option to secure climate goals.


As a result, we need to showcase our expertise, and how we ensure our producers appropriately manage their natural resources according to their bioregion, to keep the doomsayers at bay.