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Education in focus at Beef2024

Published 30 April 2024

Media Release

Enrichment of the next generation of beef enthusiasts will be a key focus of Beef2024, with an extensive line-up of opportunities for even the youngest of visitors.

On Sunday, 5 May, young cattlemen and cattlewomen will go head-to-head in the Young Commercial Judges Competition, where they will be required to judge four pens of cattle on conformation, muscling, market suitability and evenness.

Monday, 6 May, will see young competitors line up for Junior Paraders, Schools Team Judging, and the Junior Led Steer Competition, with strong numbers of nominations received to date and more still rolling in.

Renowned for being the largest beef industry event in the Southern Hemisphere, Beef2024 will this year bring together school students from as far away as Tamworth, New South Wales, with a cohort of 15 students from Calrossy Anglican School making the 1,000- kilometre trek to Rockhampton.

Calrossy Anglican School Secondary Teacher, Kathy de Jong, said the group of students from years eight to 11 would be competing in all junior competitions early in the week, as well as showing the school’s stud Shorthorn heifers in the Stud Cattle Competition.

“The three Shorthorn heifers we are bringing have been bred by the school, with students actively involved in the breeding process, selecting the heifers for showing, breaking them in and preparing them,” Ms de Jong said.

“We are also bringing three steers for the Junior Led Steer Competition and Junior Paraders.”

Ms de Jong said the group of students was excited to attend an industry event of such calibre, and couldn’t wait to be on the ground in Rockhampton.

“The parents are also thrilled by the learning and growth opportunity Beef2024 presents for their children,” she said.

“In addition to the students working hard to prepare themselves and the cattle for Beef2024, support from parents and friends has been integral to Calrossy’s attendance.

“In particular, we’d like to thank Tom Acton, who is allowing us to stay at the Paradise Lagoons campdraft grounds and use the facilities, which is one of the only reasons we can afford to attend this year.”

The suite of junior judging and parading competitions is complemented by the School’s Program, with more than 3,800 students from 66 schools in Queensland and NSW participating.

This year’s School’s Program includes an educational competition, school tours, career chats and the opportunity to utilise curriculum-aligned MLA Australian Good Meat Education resources that were made available in the lead-up to Beef2024.

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Murray Watt, said it was great to see the next generation getting involved with the beef industry.

“Beef2024 is an opportunity for students to try their hand at cattle producing,” Minister Watt said.

“It means they can see, up close, all the joys and challenges of working closely with livestock and might even get their minds working on ways to do things differently.

“I sincerely hope that some of these students will be inspired to look at a career in agriculture once their schooling is through.”

Beef Australia CEO, Simon Irwin, said the triennial event exists for the advancement of the Australian beef sector, with a vision to be a world-class organisation that promotes, advances and celebrates a sustainable beef industry.

“Key to this is inspiring and cultivating the next generation, irrespective of their current involvement in agriculture,” Mr Irwin said.

“We believe it’s important for all students, whether studying agriculture or not, to gain exposure to important messages about how food is produced, while showcasing the Australian cattle industry.

“We’re particularly proud of our School’s Program, which aims to educate primary and secondary students about the origins of their food and fibre, raise the profile of careers available in agriculture, and connect students with various aspects of the agricultural supply chain including producers, agribusinesses, suppliers, agents and more.”

For more information on youth events, visit the Beef2024 website.

ENDS

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