Knockback for South West farmers’ saleyard bid

Zach RelphCountryman
Boyanup saleyard is expected to close in 2022.
Camera IconBoyanup saleyard is expected to close in 2022. Credit: Danella Bevis

A group spearheaded by South West farmers has failed in its bid to control the region’s proposed saleyard development through a co-operative model.

Countryman understands the South West Beef Co-operative’s expression of interest for the touted South West Saleyard Solution was knocked back on Monday.

The group was one of five private investors to lodge an expression of interest with the State Government-controlled WA Meat Industry Authority before September 21.

WAFarmers livestock section president David Slade confirmed the submission had been declined and was not a short-listed respondent.

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Mr Slade questioned the selection process and if WAMIA was the best organisation to aid the task.

“WAMIA have an invested interest,” he said. “I am not saying they’re biased, but they are not the best group to be making the decision.

“It would have been ideal to give the community a chance to set the saleyards up, drive it and keep it running.”

The Boyanup saleyard is poised to close in 2022.

A preferred respondent to operate the new facility is expected to be unveiled by March.

In October, WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan said the number of short-listed respondents would be determined once the EOIs had been assessed against the evaluation criteria.

Ms MacTiernan’s spokesman said on Tuesday the minister would not comment while the EOI process was ongoing.

The WA Livestock Salesmen’s Association exclusively leases and manages the saleyard, with its lease to expire in 2022, under the WA Livestock Salesmen’s Association banner.

Queensland-based Regional Livestock Exchanges is considering expanding to WA to manage the touted South West facility.

The McGowan Government has offered any company willing to replace the Boyanup saleyard with an option to also take over a long-term lease at the State Government-owned Muchea Livestock Centre.

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