Australian agricultural industries are being confronted with the challenge of proving their clean and green status. Various quality assurance programs address the clean issues, but green credentials are largely unsubstantiated. Environmental Management Systems (EMS) provided a system to justify green claims and lead to improved environmental outcomes. We have used two producer groups, aligned to either a domestic or export supply chain, to develop an EMS approach for the lamb and sheepmeat industry.
We recommend that the lamb and sheepmeat industry negotiate with the grains and wool industries to agree on a singular, 4 stage approach to EMS. The 4 stage EMS was compatible with the needs of an export and domestic supply chain, including the two producer groups. Many producers may initially find the process of EMS daunting, and need a simple entry point, as afforded by stage 1. Both export and domestic supply chains can be used as motivators for the adoption of EMS principles and practices by their suppliers. The 4 stage approach to EMS provides a means by which supply chain members of the Australian lamb and sheepmeat industry (as well as the broader community) are able to benefit from improved environmental performance and protected market access.