The weekend's federal election has coincided with Cattle Council meetings in Canberra this week, where producers who represent their industry have come together from across the country to progress our policy and advocacy priorities.
The timing of these quarterly meetings is fortuitous, because we can revisit our election wish-list in the context of a re-elected Coalition government and what that means for ongoing industry reforms.
Market access is a fundamental priority for producers and there is significant alignment between our industry and the Coalition on progressive trade reform.
A key shared objective is to support producers by ratifying the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership and delivering an Australia-European Union free trade agreement.
Strengthening trade relationships with important markets like the UK and China are also high priorities for cattle producers.
A commitment to trade reform and liberalisation, the elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers and the value of facilitating trade, is something that unites cattle producers across many of the world's major beef export countries.
With this in mind, in the coming days I will be travelling to Brazil with Cattle Council president Tony Hegarty to represent Australia at the 2019 International Beef Alliance conference.
IBA includes the national organisations representing beef cattle producers in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, Paraguay and the United States. This membership constitutes about half of global beef cattle production and almost one-third of global beef exports.
Also representing Australia at the IBA conference will be Emily Pullen, our 2018 Rising Champion, who will be travelling with us as a key component of the professional development program we offer our Rising Champions each year.
Emily will join other outstanding young professionals at the conference representing their respective countries, ensuring industry leaders from IBA-member organisations like Cattle Council hear directly from the best and brightest of the new generation of beef industry professionals.
Emily's attendance at the IBA Conference, and time spent with Cattle Council and Meat & Livestock Australia in-market in the United States on our way back from Brazil, will give her a once-in-a-lifetime professional experience and put her in good stead to make a meaningful contribution to Australia's beef industry in the future.
From Cattle Council's perspective, we are particularly keen to nurture that contribution via Emily's membership of our Marketing, Market Access & Trade (MMAT) Consultative Committee.
Nominations for this year's Rising Champions Initiative have opened this week and we strongly encourage young industry professionals aged 21 to 35 who are passionate about Australia's beef cattle industry to nominate by June 30.
The initiative, now in its 10th year, has a proud record of attracting and developing the next generation of advocates for the cattle industry, harnessing their values and vision to shape our industry's future.
Cattle Council is grateful to The Land and Australian Community Media for continuing its long-standing support of the Rising Champions program, and we look forward to welcoming this year's finalists to Canberra in August for a week of professional development, networking and our National Gala Dinner.
For further information, visit: http://www.cattlecouncil.com.au/rising-champions