Australian farmers have a deep-rooted passion for the land. Our farmers are paramount to helping us meet our strong environmental, social and animal welfare credentials and to deliver high-quality red meat to export markets and consumers.
Putting words into action
Journey onto the farms of Australian beef and lamb producers in this series of on-farm videos, where they explain their approaches to producing the consistently clean, green and safe red meat for which Australia is renowned. By sharing their stories, these farmers offer a great opportunity for others to learn how they go about caring for their animals and natural resources.
Many farmers have family farming businesses and take considerations that look at the long‑term sustainability of their land and environment, so as to be able to improve and sustain it for future generations.
It’s in farmers’ best interest to look after their animals, which is why animal welfare is always at the top of their minds. Some are investing in technologies such as precision livestock farming (PLF) to provide individual treatment for animals. PLF allows for continuous direct monitoring of animals to enable farmers to detect and control the health and welfare of their animals at any given time. Technology can include cameras, microphones, sensors and wireless communication tools.
Preserving the bush, native vegetation and soil on farms is crucial for biodiversity. Many farmers have re-vegetated their land and brought back native trees and grasses. This improves soil health and provides great shade, shelter and biodiversity for wildlife.
Others implement break crops as secondary crops to clean the soil. These can also have a bio fumigation effect, to naturally remove diseases from soil and bring nutrients from deep in the soil up to the surface. This improves soil health and feeds cattle.
Drought proofing and drought mitigation is also an important consideration for Australian farms. Spreading watering points can bring grasses back to the paddock and even out grazing pressure. On one farm, farmers introduced Leucaena and other legumes to help with the infiltration of water into soil. Leucaena has the added benefit of sequestering carbon and can reduce emissions from cattle by 20-40%.
Benefits for farmers and consumers alike
The things that matter most to farmers are also important to consumers, from biosecurity and animal welfare to environmental management and looking after their people. Australian farmers produce good, healthy food because they love being on the farm, and love the animals and environment they work in.
Article Date: 15th April 2020