International visitors still on the cards for Beef 2021
A VIRTUAL digital hub is in the works for Beef Australia 2021 as international borders continue to remain close amid COVID-19.
Beef Australia is heavily focused on international delegates with 1,200 overseas visitors from 43 countries recorded at the 2018 event.
Beef Australia CEO Ian Mill has assured this will still be a focus at the 2021 event, despite the current global pandemic circumstances.
With the uncertainty of when international border restrictions will ease, Beef Australia staff were looking at ways to still host international delegates in possibly a virtual way.
“We don’t know what that will look like in 2021 but I can assure we as a team, we are working hard to deal with that potential if we don’t have international visitors,” Mr Mill said.
He said they were looking at having an online program with a virtual experience for those who can’t be there.
Mr Mill said the team have been working closely with guidelines from the government for events over 10,000.
“We are a far away out and a lot can happen in that period,” Mr Mill said.
“Hopefully things settle down a lot more and we can get some international visitors.”
He said there a lot of exciting things in the works for the 2021 including a technology hub.
“There are great and new emerging technologies that are being developed by Australians in agriculture sector,” Mr Mill said.
“We are really excited, really looking forward to it.”
Next year’s event will be Mr Mill’s first as CEO.
“I am very excited, I love the industry, I love regional Australia and I think this is a great opportunity to let everyone know what regional Australia contributes to our economy,” he said.
Mr Mill said the event was a chance to showcase the beef industry and all the great products produced, not just the Beef Capital but Australia.
Speaking from the Rockhampton riverbank, Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management Minister David Littleproud was proud to announce $3.9 million funding had been secured for the 2021 event.
“It is a vote of confidence and faith in Beef Australia despite COVID-19 the professionalism of Beef Australia has continued on,” Mr Littleproud said.
“We are planning for a bigger and better Beef than ever, there will still be some changes make no mistake,” he said.
“Hopefully there a vaccine come May, if a vaccine is in place there might be capacity for international visitors again.
“If not we can embrace technology in a way that we continue to engage with the rest of the world, not only digitally but sending the product there.”
Given there has been so many events that have been cancelled, it was expected Beef Australia 2021 will be a huge celebration.
“We are in much need of a celebration come May next year coming out of COVID-19 and no better way to celebrate than to do is to showcase the best agriculture industries we have in this country and that is Beef,” Mr Littleproud.
Capricornia MP Michelle Landry expressed her praise for the event and was proud to support it.
“Beef very significant for Rockhampton and the whole region,” she said.
“It’s an its an opportunity for our beef producers to get together and find out about new technologies that are available.”