New livestock manager for Muchea

Rueben HaleThe West Australian
Brian “Barney” Langford.
Camera IconBrian “Barney” Langford. Credit: Jo Fulwood

Kimberley pastoralist Brian “Barney” Langford has been appointed as the new livestock manager for the Muchea Livestock Centre.

The centre has been without a manager since January, after Darren Robertson resigned to pursue other business interests.

Mr Robertson had been held in high regard by users of the facility, after overseeing significant positive change at the centre.

The WA Meat Industry Authority, which operates the centre, said the appointment was made after long consideration.

WAMIA chief executive Andrew Williams said Mr Langford had a range of livestock and customer service skills that the board required from the successful candidate.

“His experience will help to reinforce WAMIA’s existing safety-first culture and help translate it to some of the less experienced members of the livestock team,” he said.

But it seems Mr Langford will have his work cut out for him, after WAMIA also announced that from the start of the new financial year, it will no longer allow buyers or their transporters to pick up cattle directly from the sale pens.

The move, which is expected to increase the overall sale processing cost by $1.20 per head, is in response to a number of recent claims made against WAMIA for injuries sustained by third parties at the centre.

Under the plan, the management says it will work to improve co-ordination, appropriate supervision, communications, systems and processes.

Staff will be expected have a range of livestock handling experience, which will be supplemented with stock handling courses and on-the-job training.

“Following discussions with our insurers, WAMIA has made the decision to substantially reduce the number of people handling cattle at the MLC,” Mr Williams said.

“Once sold, cattle will be moved by WAMIA staff members to appropriate pick-up pens and, where possible, direct to the loading ramps ready for collection by buyers or their transport providers.”

Mr Williams said the MLC user group was advised last week and formal notification would be sent to all stakeholders, along with the modified pick-up procedures.

“An operating procure is also currently being finalised and this will be shortly sent to MLC stakeholders for comment,” he said.

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