INDEPENDENT NEWS

Pork Industry Projects To Look At Networking

Published: Sat 18 Sep 1999 05:00 PM
HON WARREN TRUSS MP MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES AND FORESTRY
15 SEPTEMBER 1999
The Federal Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Warren Truss, today approved two new projects worth a total of $18,404 to help examine the feasibility of establishing networked production methods in the Australian pork industry.
The successful applicants are a group of pork producers known as the South Burnett Networking Group.
"This type of networking has operated for many years in the United States," Mr Truss said. "It involves members of a network building a central breeding facility and then distributing the weaners to individual farms.
"The benefits of centralised breeding include improved disease control, greater cost controls and better marketing potential."
Part of the funding will support a visit by leading American veterinarian Dr Gordon Spronk.
"Dr Spronk, who is involved with producer networks in the US, will be able to provide Australian producers with a first-hand insight into the issues involved," Mr Truss said.
The projects have the potential to provide wider benefits to the Australian pork industry, including:
providing a template for other Australian producers that is both cost effective and uses existing facilities; and greater cooperation and technology transfer between the medium to small producers who still account for some 40 per cent of production.
The projects will be managed by Swine Management Services of Kingaroy, and will be funded out of the Government's $9 million National Pork Industry Development Program (NPIDP) and also by the Pig R Corporation.
"These projects are another excellent example of the Government's commitment to ensuring Australia's pork industry continues to increase its international competitiveness," Mr Truss said.
"The prevailing, strong market for Australian pork, buoyed by a substantial increase in exports, is providing the right environment for our industry to undertake these important initiatives."
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