Protecting the environment for future generations is a key responsibility for livestock producers and a vital part of ensuring the ongoing sustainability of individual businesses and the red meat industry.
Australian red meat producers have primary responsibility for stewardship of approximately 50% of Australia's land area. Australian livestock production systems are among the most efficient and sustainable in the world, with much of the production based on natural pasture systems on about 3.6 million square kilometres or 46% of Australia's land area (BRS 2005-06 data for land use in Australia).
The red meat industry operates on a principle of continuous improvement in triple bottom line performance and is always looking for ways to improve environmental sustainability. MLA has invests in research and development projects to address a range of issues relating to environmental sustainability. These activities will help producers meet the challenges of an increasingly demanding regulatory environment and growing consumer expectations.
In response to the potential impacts of livestock production on biodiversity, MLA has developed a number of training and education initiatives, codes of practice and monitoring guidelines that enable producers to adopt management practices that help protects the diverse ecosystems on-farm while maintaining an efficient and economically viable business.
Weeds cost Australian agriculture in excess of $4billion annually through their effects on the quality and quantity of the pasture resource base, physical animal injury and plant toxins consumed in the grazing process.
Climate change and climate variability
MLA is assisting red meat producers with practical strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to long-term climate change and manage seasonal climate variability through research and development initiatives. MLA also produces a range of practical climate change resources, tools and fact sheets that explain these complex issue and help red meat producers manage change.