Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) will temporarily waive fees relating to all products and services delivered directly to MLA levy payers from 25 November 2019 until 30 June 2021.

This will include items such as Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) and National Vendor Declarations (NVD), training workshops such as Bred Well Fed Well and field days such as Beef Up Forums.

This does not include the transaction levy.

The announcement was made yesterday by MLA Managing Director Jason Strong as part of his key note address to the 2019 MLA Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Tamworth.

Mr Strong said there is a unique opportunity for transformational change in our industry to deliver on the Red Meat Advisory Council’s ambitious 10-year vision of doubling the value of red meat sales – with MLA focussed on changing the way it operates by making decisions for where our focus should and shouldn’t lie.

“For MLA, ‘fewer, bigger and bolder’ will become a key guiding principle so we can deliver transformational change and in doing so build a sustainable, more profitable, and resilient red meat industry,” Mr Strong said.

“MLA is privileged to be in a truly unique position.  We work at every link of the red meat supply chain globally, with the people, insights and capital to invest in activities that create real benefit to levy-payers and amplify these investments like never before.

“MLA’s commitment is that every decision, every action and every investment will be made to create unprecedented transformational change – with producers and the supply chain at the heart of those considerations.

“To achieve this change and deliver the vision, there needs to be a renewed shared commitment from all of industry, with greater collaboration.

“But we know achieving this goal won’t be easy, especially given the challenges we face as an industry – with drought, floods and fires having a significant impact in recent times.”

Mr Strong said by temporarily removing the costs of MLA’s products and services, the intention is to support producers directly, and fast track adoption, for the benefit of the red meat supply chain.

“We must use everything in our collective and individual powers to deliver transformational change and drive the national recovery of the red meat industry. I have no doubt that we are up for the challenge. We are resilient and when we work together we can achieve anything,” Mr Strong said.

“Since I started as Managing Director in March, I’ve listened to many people across industry and too often I have heard the obstacles restricting change.

“Many of these challenges are outside of what we can control, however, there are also some significant areas that we can influence and overcome. Temporarily removing charges for our products and services is something that MLA can control, and therefore my hope is a shared commitment from industry, to focus on supporting red meat levy payers and ensuring we tackle tough times together.

“As a service provider, much of the assistance we can offer producers during tough times revolves around information, practical tools, communications and support. However, we want to ensure producers don’t have any financial restrictions in accessing the products and services we provide directly to them. 

“This is only the first step – but one that is practical and immediate – and demonstrates MLA’s commitment to support producers.

“We are not focused only on what we do, but how we do it to create unprecedented transformational change. As an organisation we have already begun identifying a number of ways we can deliver a more prosperous and resilient industry.”