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MLA seeks industry champions for new Red Meat Ambassadors program

30 September 2021

Applications are now open for Meat & Livestock Australia’s (MLA) 2021 Red Meat Industry Ambassadors Program, an intensive development opportunity that offers participants training in community engagement, media and social media, providing tools and techniques to build trust with consumers.

The program is designed for producers and people in industry support roles throughout the red meat supply chain, with successful participants joining MLA’s alumni of ambassadors across Australia.

MLA Managing Director, Jason Strong, said positioning the red meat industry as professional and progressive on issues critical to our success is a top priority and a key driver behind the program.

“The Red Meat Ambassadors program has been developed in consultation with industry to create a network of industry champions who have the skills, knowledge and confidence to engage with the community to ensure the wider Australian population outside of agriculture recognises the vital role our industry plays in food production and trusts us to deliver high value, high quality products and to feel good about eating red meat,” Mr Strong said.

“We are seeking people who are passionate about the red meat industry and are committed to contributing positively to build relationships with those outside of our industry by sharing their story.

“MLA’s consumer sentiment research shows our industry has great support from the Australian community, but we need to be proactive in reaching out and engaging with them on the issues and concerns which matter most to them. This program will equip people in the industry to do just that.”

To find out more about the program and its requirements, and to submit an Expression of Interest, visit the MLA website.

Red Meat Industry Ambassador Hugh Dawson

Head stockman on ‘Beetaloo Station,’ a beef breeding operation in the NT, Hugh Dawson, said it was important for the people on the ground to tell the industry’s story to ensure it’s told accurately.

“We need to be on the front foot sharing authentic and transparent stories of agriculture so the wider community can make an informed decision on how they perceive the red meat industry,” Hugh said.

“I’m keen to show people that animal welfare is front and centre of what we do, because a productive industry hinges on having animals that are happy and healthy.

“Through social media we’re able to reach metropolitan areas, which is an important means of attracting support for red meat from outside the industry.”

Red Meat Industry Ambassador Kate McBride

Fifth-generation producer from a sheep station in western NSW, Kate McBride, said sharing experiences helps people in the industry realise they aren’t alone.

“Seeing other producers as colleagues rather than competitors is really important because we have to work together to improve our industry,” Kate said.

“Now more than ever we need to connect with people outside our industry. People don’t understand what they’re eating let alone where is comes from, so it’s up to us to help bridge the gap.

“I genuinely believe that people in the cities want to engage with us, so making it simple for them to understand and showing off our way of life has been great.”