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Report into social value of saleyards released

23 June 2022

Key points:

  • ALMA commissioned a research report to understand what saleyards mean to the local community, service providers and stakeholders.
  • The report found saleyards are a local hub for socialising, keeping up with market trends and giving back to the community.
  • Information for the report was collected on six saleyards, with a total of 152 online surveys and 105 interviews conducted across five states to inform the research.

The Australian Livestock Markets Association (ALMA) recently released the results of a research project conducted into the social value of saleyards for rural communities.

As the national body for saleyard owners and operators in Australia, ALMA commissioned the report to investigate what the saleyards means to local communities, service providers and stakeholders.

While significant research has been conducted into the economic value of saleyards, the social side of sale days and saleyard communities has not been previously explored.

Information for the report was collected on six saleyards, with a total of 152 online surveys and 105 interviews conducted across five states to inform the research.

Producers, livestock agents, saleyard staff members, transport operators and local or state government representatives were just some of the participants interviewed as part of the project.

According to the report, attending the saleyards is a great way to connect socially, as well as keeping up to date with market trends.

Many survey participants noted they felt socially isolated when they couldn’t attend the saleyards due to COVID-19 restrictions, with this potentially having flow-on effects on personal wellbeing.

The report said saleyards also provide a local ‘hub’ to deliver a range of services, such as mental health and drought support. Additionally, saleyards are also noticeably dedicated to giving back to the local community, with many examples of fundraisers and donations observed.

This research project will be a valuable tool in future government policy and funding direction.