Australian Pork Newspaper
P. 1

Phone: 07 4697 3344 • Fax 07 4697 3532
Vol 21. No. 12 December 2017 Australian Pork Newspaper PO Box 387 Cleveland 4163 Phone (07) 3286 1833 Fax (07) 3821 2637 Email
The annual Pork CRC/Australian Pork Limited one-day student workshop was held in Melbourne’s Grand Hyatt on Sunday, November 19. More photos from the student workshop and Pork CRC’s Stakeholders’ Day can be found on Page 19.
Meaningful Melbourne marathon matters
All roads lead to Melbourne for the Delegates’ Forum
Point of View
ONE of the great assets of our industry is the ability to have a room full of rep- resentatives who can legiti- mately discuss and debate those issues affecting us the most.
We call this the Delegates’ Forum and the last one was held in Melbourne on Novem- ber 15, with the annual con- ference and annual general meeting following up on the 16th.
From a governance perspec- tive, our two retiring Elected Directors – David Plant and Brian Luxford – were re- elected without competition at the AGM.
Additionally, with the retire- ment of Specialist Director Kay Carey, the Board an- nounced the appointment of a replacement Specialist Direc- tor – Andrew Baxter.
Andrew is a highly experi- enced professional in the mar- keting and communications space, presently employed as the CEO of Publicis Australia – one of the largest agencies of its kind in the country.
I think Andrew’s skills will be very valued on the Board.
He is due to be ratified by the Delegates at the next op- portunity, which will be in May 2018.
Additionally, Enzo Allara, our long-serving chairman, announced his intentions to step down from the Board in a time frame that allows for a replacement chair to be found
with minimum disruption. Enzo has been the chair of Australian Pork Limited for the entire time I’ve been em- ployed as CEO (over 12 years) andheisgoingtobeahard
act to follow.
It’s been a privilege for me
to work with someone as tal- ented and capable as Enzo and I believe his knowledge and wisdom has been of enormous benefit to our industry.
He’s not gone yet, however, and I’ll be enjoying working with his guidance for a bit longer.
The big discussion points at the Delegates’ Forum tended to revolve around pig and pork supply dynamics and demand trends.
Ex farm gate pig prices re- main stable but stubbornly low and the general expectations are that this won’t change un- til demand gets significantly ahead of supply again.
The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics information tells us pig slaughter numbers for the year to September are up by 3 percent on the previ- ous 12-month period and pork production volume is up by nearly 5.5 percent over the same period.
Retail sales of fresh pork represent about half of all the production volume here in Australia (the remainder be- ing exported, going to food service or into processing).
☛ continued P2
LET me take the initiative in this Initiatives column by getting in early to wish you all a safe and enjoyable Christmas and may the har- vest be kind and prices re- main at least static through the Christmas and New Year periods.
Also, I want to remind you that our summer course, ‘Sci- ence and Practice of Pig Pro- duction’, runs from January 29 to February 9 at the Uni- versity of Adelaide’s Rose- worthy campus, South Aus- tralia.
The course is open to any- one in the industry, with Pork CRC covering the travel and other costs of the first 15 production-based personnel to register for the course, so discuss it with those you need to in your organisation and register ASAP.
All details, including the registration form and social events, are up on our website ( or can be obtained from Rebecca Smith (rebecca.smith@porkcrc. and Dr William van Wettere (william.vanwet- who will be running the course again this year. Inspirational students
I spent nine days in Mel- bourne in late November, at- tending the APL Delegates’ Forum and annual confer- ence, Pork CRC Board meet- ing and Pork CRC Stakehold- ers’ Day and then APSA.
I learnt a lot during the stay, albeit quite a marathon, made valuable new contacts and particularly enjoyed the con- tributions of our Pork CRC students and graduates, who have really come into their own and are showing employ- ers why they need them to boost their businesses.
It has been truly inspiration- al to witness their progress and satisfying to know that Pork CRC has been a major provider of opportunities for this talented pool of young people.
APSA highlights
There were a couple of highlights from the APSA meeting.
One was an excellent sym- posium on genetics where some extremely smart people, including Dr Dorian Garrick from Massey University, New Zealand, Dr Matthew Cuth- bertson from Genus PIC, Ten- nesee, US and our very own Dr Kim Bunter from AGBU, Armidale, NSW, told us what was happening globally and locally in a language even I could understand.
The news was all good, with advanced genetic selection techniques, including genom- ics, expected to markedly enhance the rate of genetic progress in what might be termed traditional traits such
as reproduction and growth and carcass characteristics, but also in traits such as birth weight (even with high and increasing litter sizes) and in disease resilience and maybe even disease resistance.
This progress has required massive investment by breed- ing companies such as PIC, but you would have been im- pressed by the technologies and methodologies developed and it seems they can be ex- tended to breeding programs globally.
Genetic progress
We also heard that genetic progress has been improved by ‘new’ A I technologies such as post-cervical AI and set-time AI in weaned sows.
The latter enables a single dose of semen to be used and the former allows for the number of sperm per dose to be reduced.
I have been discussing each of these with you for some time since both can be used commercially.
You could genuinely in- crease genetic progress in your herds, providing there are elite boars for the traits you are most interested in or most need in your herd in the
☛ continued P3
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