MLA Europe

Representing Australian farmers and red meat in Europe

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Australian red meat producers are well aware of their responsibilities towards their animals, and recognise that livestock care is fundamental to the success and sustainability of every farm, transporter, and processor. That’s why the Australian red meat industry is committed to maintaining a high level of animal welfare practices, ensuring that all our livestock are well cared-for.

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The Australian red meat industry recognises that its practices – like all industries – have an environmental impact. But more so than many industries, our livelihoods depend on the land. We also know that consumers expect environmentally sustainable ways of working, and that European consumers are particularly aware in this area.

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The Australian red meat industry is committed to producing safe, high-quality product for export. As well as being internationally recognised as being free of all major epidemic livestock diseases, Australia has developed a lifetime traceability and food integrity system.

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Although a large landmass, Australia produces only a small portion of the world’s red meat. In 2018, Australia produced around 3% of the world’s beef, and an even smaller percentage of sheepmeat. Compared with the EU, which produces 11% of the world’s beef, Australia is a small producer.

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Australia and the EU are longstanding and like-minded trade partners, with overall bilateral trade in goods worth €46.7 billion in 2017. This includes trade in agrifoods, worth a total of €5.46 billion in 2017. The balance of trade is in the EU’s favour in this area, with a trade surplus of €1.17 billion in 2017. For example, in that year more than double the amount of EU pork (68,649 tonnes) was exported to Australia than all of Australia’s red meat exports (32,143 tonnes) to the EU combined.

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Australian export map

Source: Australian red meat exports - 2018 data from USDA

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