Dairy Australia Reviews The Year

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27th November 2009, 05:38pm - Views: 1020

Dairy Australia Chairman Max Roberts told farmers and industry today at the Dairy Australia Annual General Meeting that in a year full of challenges, the Australia industry.s core strength is it collaboration.

"As an industry we work cohesively right across the supply chain . we are one of the few agricultural industries who are so closely linked. Numerous organisations work together to develop our industry, ensure its future and present a united front."

Mr Roberts acknowledged the roll coaster ride that dairy has endured this year, with volatility in demand, declining milk prices, climate and input prices.

"For many businesses, this sort of volatility is extremely difficult to manage, however the fact Australian farmers have been adapting through these times is evidence of the skill and resilience we have on our dairy farms."

Mr Roberts said that while it had been a very difficult year, recent signs of market recovery coupled with milk price step-ups and some recent rain, means the outlook for the industry is more positive.

Throughout 2008/09, Dairy Australia invested in 173 projects based on agreed industry priorities.

Dairy Australia Managing Director Mike Ginnivan said that investments and outcomes are regularly reviewed to be consistent with our objective of a viable, sustainable industry.

"To ensure a significant cost/benefit return on levy and matching government funds, a priority for Dairy Australia is working with local and international service providers and other primary industries for co-investment.

"Key Dairy Australia projects around animal breeding and reproduction, vocational education and training, and farm systems management, submitted to government as part of national research review, showed an average benefit cost ratio of more than 10 to 1,"

"The work of Dairy Australia in the health and nutrition area has contributed to the sustainability and strength of the domestic market," Dr Ginnivan said.

Dr Ginnivan also spoke about the Inquiry into the future of dairying in the Lower Murray Darling Basin.

"Most valuably, the Inquiry assessed that the region.s dairy industry has a future. All of the conditions that enable a viable dairy industry to exist are present, although the region faces recognised but manageable risk."

Mr Roberts told the meeting about exciting new areas of research in genetics and robotics.

"On the farm it.s hard to imagine that a calf born this morning could be subjected to a genetic assessment using Gene Marker technology and that calf.s lifetime productive capacity accurately assessed within a couple of days.

"The other major event next year will be the unveiling of the next generation of Robotic Milkers that will allow larger operations to use the technology. The concept of a nine-to-five working day on a dairy farm will be a little closer to reality," Mr Roberts said.

Two Board members were elected to the Board at the AGM. John Doyle and Kelvin Jackson, previously been Dairy Australia Board members, we re-elected for another term.

Mr Roberts also paid special tribute to key figures leaving their roles: Ian McCauley, Chairman of Murray Goulburn; Alan Burgess, Former President of Australia Dairyfarmers (ADF); and outgoing Dairy Australia Managing Director Mike Ginnivan.

Mr Roberts welcomed new Dairy Australia Managing Director Ian Halliday. Mr Halliday will commence with Dairy Australia in January 2010.

For more information, contact
Adele Buhagiar on
03 9694 3894 or
0400 923 221 or
email:[email protected]

SOURCE: Dairy Australia

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