Beef 2021 expected to surpass 2018 event numbers
Preparations are being finalised for the 12th Beef Australia event with the gates to officially open on Monday.
The first day, dubbed People’s Day, will be one of the busiest days with the public holiday.
Visitors will have the chance to check out 454 trade fair exhibits and 35 food outlets.
Throughout the week there will also be 48 different ticketed events and 34 seminars and symposiums and 22 events in the Ken Coombe Tech Yards.
There is also a new national line-up of celebrity chefs, doing dinner and lunches.
Speaking to the media just days before opening day, Beef Australia Chairman Bryce Camm was eager to see it coming together.
“It is full of excitement and activity here on the grounds at Beef Australia because we are some under three days away before we open the gates for what will be the largest event to be hosted in regional Queensland this year,” he said.
The expo will be the largest exposition of stud cattle genetics in the southern hemisphere.
“There is cattle coming from right around the country, right from the depths of South Australia up through the Northern Territory,” he said.
“It is such a huge opportunity for our entire beef industry.
“The event embraces the entire supply chain of the Australian beef industry, an industry that is renown around the world for its quality and consistency of product.”
All eyes will be on the winner of the Nutrien Livestock Stud Cattle Parade of Champions and Interbreed Championship on Thursday afternoon.
Mr Camm said it was “absolutely life-changing” to win the competition.
“It is the greatest competition to be hosted in this country and many stud breeders and competitors are very keen to take on away the coveted interbreed championship,” Mr Camm said.
“They will be recognised as the greatest stud or genetics producer in the country, indeed those genetics are sought around the world from producers here in Australia.”
Beef Australia 2021 is expected to inject more than $100 million into the local economy over the five days of the event.
“That is a great shot in the arm to our local community and Rocky,” Mr Camm said.
“It is big industry for trade and commerce during the week, but so significant to the Rockhampton and Capricorn region.”
Despite COVID, the numbers from exhibitors are hardly down and may be up.
“I think the appetite for people to come and network, connect and celebrate this region and our industry is definitely alive and well,” Mr Camm said.
The interest has also been high from the spectator side.
“The level of interest and excitement around the event is the highest we have ever seen,” Mr Camm said.
“We are really excited to welcome as many people through the gates as we can.”
Beef Australia CEO Ian Mill said this weekend would see cattle be moved to their stalls, trade sites and food exhibitors bumped in, and chefs start to arrive.
“It really is coming together, it is amazing how this precinct can be developed in such a short amount of time to accommodate what we have on show and the number of people we are going to be hosting,” he said.
“The Rocky community and the industry are going to be surprised with what we are offering.”
The team behind the event is made up of more than 800 staff, volunteers, and contractors.
“Our board are voluntary and our event teams are all voluntary, there are a lot of people behind the scenes that make this come together,” Mr Mill said.
“They all have wonderful ideas and brilliant concepts of what we might be able to do to further showcase the industry and what the industry does.
“Can I thank publicly the support we have got from the local health authorities in allowing and helping us plan to put this on.”
Rockhampton Regional Council Mayor Tony Williams is keen to put his Akubra and trek around the grounds this week.
Starting his career at the meatworks, Cr Williams is really proud to be involved with Beef Australia and this event will be his first as mayor.
“Beef 2021 is something we have been looking forward to since the last event and it is fantastic we are on the eve,” he said.
“Being the beef capital really is something our community is very proud of
“I know we will have a lot of visitors coming into the town but we encourage all the locals to come on and be part of it as well.”
He urged locals to take their time and be patient.
“The economic benefit that will be seen from this event will really help the region, not only the Rockhampton region but further afield with that spend going a lot wider,” he said.
“I know there will be some traffic congestion but for a such a major event and what the benefits will be, a little bit of inconvenience - patience is all we are asking for. ”