Boyanup yards death knell

Hayley DavisThe West Australian
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THE Capel Shire Council has demanded industry representatives become more active in determining future plans for a new cattle saleyard to be built in the South West.

The call came after the council passed a motion last week to inform the State Government it did not intend to renew the lease for the Boyanup Saleyards in 2022.

The lease is held by the WA Livestock Salesmen's Association, made up of Elders and Landmark, which also operate the yards.

Capel shire president Murray Scott said the council wanted to step back from playing such an active role in lobbying the State Government to commit resources to a new South West saleyard.

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"It takes the pressure off us, " he said.

"I do firmly believe that a state of the art set of saleyards will bring people back to the rail."

Last week the council asked the Bunbury Wellington Economic Alliance to form a working group of interested parties to develop a business plan and identify funding options for a South West saleyard to submit to the State Government.

Bunbury Wellington Economic Alliance chief executive officer Matt Granger said the alliance had formed a sub-committee on the issue.

"It is reasonable to expect ongoing need for saleyards, even when producers send consignments of prime stock direct to abattoirs, " he said.

Dardanup farmer and former WA Beef Farmers president Mike Norton said a South West saleyard was vital for the industry.

"You need some place to stop and offload, on animal welfare grounds, " he said.

"Saleyards are a community asset, like kindergartens or a community hall, which are difficult to run on a commercial basis.

"The shires and everybody just need to quietly work together to identify some land where we could put this facility with other kindred industries."

Westcoast Wools State livestock manager Phil Petricevich said wider industry consultation on the issue was needed and a saleyard was vital for the industry's future.

"Maybe it's time the Government revealed just who in the industry doesn't believe we need a new saleyard in the South West, " he said.

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