Sorry Mackay ... it?s ours

FIRST Toowoomba, now Mackay ... it seems everybody wants a piece of our Beef Australia expo.

Just over a week after it was revealed Beef Australia organisers had discussed moving the event to Toowoomba, Mackay Area Consultative Committee executive officer Greg Sutherland has announced plans to lobby to have Beef 2009 held in the city.

"Basically we heard that they (Beef Australia) were looking at moving so we thought we'd put our hand up for it,'' he said.

"They might decide to stay in Rocky but if they want to consider alternatives we think we would have a fair chance.''

Mr Sutherland said he had spent much of the week in talks with groups like the Mackay Show Society in an effort to drum up support for the campaign.

"We're only a couple of hours up the highway and we'd be mad to see the event leave this area'' Mr Sutherland said.

"You don't know if you don't try and it's only taken us a couple of days to rally the troops.''

But Beef Australia chairman Geoff Murphy said he had not heard about the plans before he was contacted by media this morning. "Nobody has approached us about this ... this is the first I have heard of it.'' Mr Murphy said it was unlikely the event would move north, saying he believed it should remain in the beef capital.

"There is no real prospect of us moving to Mackay ... I don't see any need for us to move away from Rockhampton, I think this is where we need to be,'' he said.

And Mr Murphy said he was happy with discussions with Rockhampton City Council.

"We just need to enter a longterm business deal with the Rockhampton City Council and I will do all in my power to ensure that happens.



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