Rural Awareness Tour

Rural Awareness Tour

Cattle Council’s annual Rural Awareness Tour (RAT) provides government officials and key industry stakeholders involved in the development and implementation of federal policies affecting beef cattle producers with an on-the-ground understanding of the beef cattle industry and the affects of government policy. Over 200 senior decision-makers have participated since the first ‘RAT’ in 1991, increasing their awareness of this strong and dynamic industry and developing a comprehensive network with people on the tour (including industry stakeholders, government officials and agribusiness staff) and associated industries at the grass-roots level.

2022 Tour of the NT and North Queensland

The 2022 Rural Awareness Tour was conducted from October 31-November 4 with an extended leg for international delegates sponsored by an ATMAC grant. The tour had the largest delegation of any Rural Awareness Tour with 19 Department of Agriculture representatives and five representatives from Indonesia. The tour was hosted by Cattle Council’s Corrine Dooley, Mike Darby and Robert Herrick.

The tour included three days around Townsville and Charters Towers gaining insight into pastoral cattle production at Virginia Park Station, industry research at CSIRO Woodstock, environmental management at Wambiana Station, indigenous land management at Mungulla Station, northern processing at the JBS Stuart abattoir and live export preparation at the Reid River Export Depot.

In Townsville the group toured the Port of Townsville – a key live export facility – engaged with representatives from Woolworths to discuss supply chain and consumer expectation and were given a presentation from the Livestock Collective.

Two days were spent visiting sites in the Northern Territory, including the Berrima pre-export facility, the Berrima Farm research facility, Road Trains of Australia, Coomalie Holding Depot and Bridge Creek station.

Delegates engaged with industry representatives in functions in Townsville and Darwin. Thanks to all of our hosts, who made the program a success; AgForce, NTCA and NLEA for their assistance in putting the tour together and to CCA President Lloyd Hick for his particiapation and engagement with the delegation.