In this file:
· Brand Australia’s big steak in China
· Live cattle exports: Kidman opens fresh beef route to China
Brand Australia’s big steak in China
Shan Goodwin, Queensland Country Life (Australia)
13 Mar 2018
FAITH in the ability of brand Australia to deliver $360 price tags on steaks served up in Shanghai for many years to come appears pretty strong at Gina Rinehart’s S Kidman and Co.
Judging by board member Andrew Robb’s assessment of where beef should be looking, the emergence of lucrative Asian markets is fundamentally changing the way the beef trade operates.
No longer was the focus on the supply side. Now we were assuming an influence on demand and the value of our product, he said.
Mr Robb, also a former Australian trade minister, pitched both branding and China as a “huge part” of Australian beef’s future in a presentation at this year’s ABARES conference in Canberra.
Underpinning the mega premiums Australian beef could command in China was trust in the integrity of the product, slick traceability mechanisms and huge numbers of people moving into higher income brackets, he explained.
ABARES economists believe demand for beef in China will continue to outstrip supply.
This financial year, Australia will ship 122,000 tonnes, a 17 per cent increase, and that is projected to grow strongly at 5pc each year to 2023.
“We are a high cost country so we need to aim for top 1pc,” Mr Robb said.
“If we doubled our ag production, including meat, we could not go anywhere near satisfying the top 1pc of the Chinese market.
“We are mad to push average quality into a market like that when we can command that top 1pc.”
For the first 170 years, Australia’s agricultural relationships and investment had been with Europe and the US but for the past three decades eight of our top ten trading partners were “in our back yard” - China, of course, the biggest, Mr Robb said.
“Our surplus is about $70 billion over what we import from China, so Trump - eat your heart out,” he said.
China has 20pc of world’s population, 7pc of world’s water and 63pc of that water is deeply polluted. Some of that pollution will take centuries to correct.
That situation in itself presents opportunities for Australia’s top-class water managers but above all, it is the underlying reason Australia is in such demand as a food supplier, according to Mr Robb.
Chinese people simply don’t trust their fellow countrymen to produce the safe food they want, he said.
As China brought 500m people out of poverty, the first thing they wanted was protein, the second health...
Live cattle exports: Kidman opens fresh beef route to China
Jamie-Lee Oldfield, The Weekly Times (Australia)
Mar 13, 2018
KIDMAN’S plan to export hundreds of thousands of live cattle to China has been established.
Kidman board member Andrew Robb, speaking last week at an ABARES conference, said the main issue had been meeting the tough health protocol while still being profitable.
“We ended up with a very safe procedure where cattle go into quarantine here and are fed, then to an island off the coast of Shanghai, fed again and then get slaughtered on the island, and the only thing that arrives on the mainland is fresh meat,” he said.
“At the moment, Chinese can buy chilled beef and frozen beef but they can’t buy fresh beef from Australia — or anyone else.”
Mr Robb said they would send 300,000 “in the next little while” and take it from there.
Mr Robb said recent beef trade issues with China, such as the delisting of certain processing plants in Australia last year because of labelling problems, were mainly geopolitical rather than technical.
Kidman launched its own Santa Gertrudis branded beef product earlier this month, and it is already available at selected hotels and restaurants.
The 100-day grain-fed product will see Kidman expand the capacity of its Tungali feedlot at Sedan in South Australia from 3000 to 10,000.
It was expected that Mr Robb would speak on the new brand at the conference last week, but instead he focused on Australian opportunity in Asia.
He said the focus in Australia agriculture had always been about supply, rather than influencing markets.
“China has got 20 per cent of the world’s population, it’s got 7 per cent of the world’s water and 63 per cent of that water is deeply polluted,” Mr Robb said.
“It is the underlying reason why Australia is in so much demand in China, because people don’t trust the fruit and veg and meat product. The fresh produce in China is not trusted virtually by anyone.”
He said the issue would only grow as more people received higher incomes...