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Australian Kosher Lamb Grant Agri Group

Grant Agri Group

Grant Agri is a collective group of companies that provide long-term, demand driven, agriculture commodity supply chains to create food security for nations. It is a complete horizontal and vertical integration in agribusiness.

Demand for kosher meat

The FAO predict that, overall, global meat consumption is projected to increase more than 4 percent per person over the next 10 years. Among the different types of livestock, mutton and lamb will see the second largest percentage increase in per capita consumption between 2014 and 2024.

Regionally, Israel’s demand for kosher meat, particularly lamb, is increasing at 15% per annum. The State of Israel constitutes the largest market for kosher food in the world. Over 60 percent of the Jewish population, over 5.5 million people, maintains some degree of kosher observance in the home.

All meat imported to Israel must be kosher. Such restriction means Israeli consumers are at risks of supply constraints and price inflation.

Australian “Kosher” Lamb & Mutton Processing.

Australia is amongst the world's largest and most successful and efficient producers of commercial livestock, particularly prime lamb and mutton. It is considered one of the cleanest environments in the world for livestock production and Australian red meat is in high demand.

In Australia, the national standard for meat production requires that all animals must be effectively stunned (unconscious) prior to slaughter. The vast majority of halal slaughter in Australia (including at export abattoirs), for instance, complies with this standard, that is, all animals are stunned prior to slaughter.

Notwithstanding, there are a small number of abattoirs in Australia that have been granted permission from the relevant State or Territory food authorities to conduct religious slaughter without prior stunning – for either Halal or Kosher purposes. These ‘approvals’ are effectively exemptions to standard Australian slaughter practice and are covered under a nationally adopted guideline Ritual Slaughter for Ovine (Sheep) and Bovine (Cattle).

Today, only a handful of Australian abattoirs operate a kosher licence, processing a limited quantity of animals that are sold domestically. It is understood that no exemptions are currently in place for export abattoirs.

Current Controversy

There is a growing global activism against non-stun ritual slaughter. Numerous high profile Australian groups such as The Veterinary Institute for Animal Ethics, The RSPCA and Animals Australia are actively seeking to overturn non-stun ritual slaughter in Australia.

Unfortunately, in Australia public opinion and commentary is one sided. Following an ABC Four Corners investigation into Indonesian abattoirs, non-stun slaughter has become highly controversial. That many animal welfare groups dismiss ritual slaughter as redundant dogma, and that this conclusion it is supported by mainstream media, suggests that endeavouring to establish a Kosher export operation in Australia is both impractical and unfeasible.

OPPORTUNITY: AUSTRALIAN KOSHER LAMB SUPPLY CHAIN

Rabbinic consensus is that pre-stunning is incompatible with principles expressed by the Torah. Therefore in developing a Kosher lamb supply chain, the rules and practices of Shechita and Kashering must be adhered. To do this, it is proposed that the slaughter and processing components of the supply chain be taken offshore, to a suitable nation that allows the observance of Shechita.

Lambs would be effectively sourced in Australia and “live” exported to a suitable, low cost, complying environment, and processed accordingly. Lamb meat would then be exported to Israel in accordance with the strict standards of Kosher. Thus, “Australian Kosher Lamb”.

Australian Lamb

Australia is considered one of the top global producers of lamb. Australia is internationally recognized as free of all major livestock diseases, and Australian Lamb is all-natural, grass-fed, pasture-raised, and free of artificial additives and hormone growth promotants, being raised across natural Australian grasslands.

In Australia, lambs are produced in a wide range of climates—from the arid and semi-arid parts of the inland region, to the high rainfall areas of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.

Quality Assured – Live Animals

All sheep raised in Australia are covered by the Australian Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) program, which provides certification and verification systems that can be used to instill confidence in on-farm food safety practices and animal quality.

The National Vendor Declaration (NVD) is the food safety document that underpins the LPA program in Australia. It shows the history of how the animal was raised.

The Flockcare quality assurance program is incorporated into the LPA. Flockcare is an independently audited LPA program for on-farm management practices including chemicals. It is based on HACCP and ISO 9002.

The National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) is Australia’s system for the identification and tracing of sheep biosecurity, food safety, product integrity and market access. It was developed by the Australian government and the red meat industry and became mandatory in 2006.

The Property Identification Code (PIC) is the core basis of Australia’s livestock traceability system. It underpins Australia’s NVD and the NLIS programs. The PIC system was introduced in the late 1060s and identifies each property with an eight-digit alphanumeric code. The code is issued by state governments and identifies the state, region and location of the property.

The NLIS for sheep is based on the use of the PIC, the application of a visually readable ear tag, which records the PIC and the use of approved documentation for the flock. The system facilitates trace-back to the property of birth. This information is transferred to a central database, allowing the tracing of sheep from the farm to the point of slaughter to occur swiftly and efficiently. This is one attribute that distinguishes the NLIS from other traceability systems around the word and ensures that red meat from Australia is always safe and reliable.

These systems work in seamlessly with live animal export programs and ensures quality of the animal from birth to slaughter.

Australia: Sheep numbers by State

Live Export

Australia is a global leader in livestock export.

With a reputation in superior breeding performance, disease free status, animal welfare standards, and the newly legislated Export Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) to ensure all exports are conducted in accordance with internationally accepted World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) standards up to and including the point of slaughter, Australia sets the global benchmark for Livestock Export.

Australia’s livestock exporting industry is heavily regulated. Australian exporters must be licensed by the Australian Government and comply with a range of regulations and standards including the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) and the Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (ASEL).

Grant Agri (Australia) is a licensed Livestock Exporter (license L706), a member of LiveCorp and the Australian Meat and Livestock Association (MLA)

The Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System

In 2011, the Australian Government introduced a new regulatory framework, the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS).

ESCAS is designed to assure the welfare of exported Australian livestock for feeder and slaughter purposes and is based on four key pillars;

  1. Animal Welfare;
  2. Control through the supply chain;
  3. Traceability through the supply chain, and;
  4. Independent auditing.

Australian exporters are required to demonstrate compliance with ESCAS, which includes demonstrating compliance with international animal welfare recommendations, control, traceability and independent auditing arrangements, prior to being given clearance to export from the Australian Government.

Grant Agri - Approved arrangements for the export of livestock & Ritual Slaughter.

An approved arrangement is an agreement between the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and a livestock exporter that allows for a streamlined export certification process. The purpose of the approved arrangement is to describe the operations which, when correctly applied by a livestock export business (the exporter), will effectively manage the preparation and certification of livestock exported from Australia.

Grant Agri would establish the entire supply chain associated with the Kosher Lamb export. This would include the approval of a “non-stun” abattoir in the destination country, under Australian Ritual Slaughter for Ovine (Sheep) and Bovine (Cattle) guidelines and OIE Standards.

Grant Agri Proposed Supply Chain

Live Sheep

Grant Agri has a close association with many of Australia's top cattle breeders and has the ability to source large numbers of lambs across NSW, SA and Victoria. Live lambs would be sourced within a typical live weight range of between 32-40kgs. This would produce a dressed weight, or carcass weight of between 12-18kgs.

Pre-Export Quarantine

Grant Agri would operate a special purpose pre-export quarantine property that where lambs would be aggregated, veterinary checked and processed prior to export. The property will be located in Northern NSW, being a central to the main regional sale markets for lambs. Veterinary checks would be conducted to ensure disease free status of the animals, together with general health and quality.

Air-Fright

Lambs would be exported via air-freight, utilizing a 747-400 cargo aircraft. Lambs will be loaded into special purpose animal crates and flown from Toowoomba Airport, which is a centrally located international private airport in Queensland. Airfreight is an effective means of livestock transport allowing for animals to reach the abattoir destination within a 10-12 hour travel window.

Abattoir

A new, export grade, “kosher” abattoir would be constructed specifically for the purpose of being solely utilized for “kosher” lamb production. The abattoir would be designed and constructed in compliance with Israel meat import regulations, Kosher rules and practices, including Shechita, Kashering, and related processing and labeling.

The abattoir would be constructed in a suitable location, and would be designed utilizing the latest processing, and animal welfare technology.

Lambs would be bedded and housed for 24 hours following arrival to calm them following the airfreight. Water and feed would be provided.

Following this, Lambs would enter the lairage, which is the pre-slaughter holding area.

Yards and pens to be designed in consideration of Temple Grandin principles, including curved races and large pen areas to ensure calm handling of animals.

Entry to the slaughter area would be by means of a double rail conveyor to the humane restraint device for kosher slaughter of sheep. The complete processing system would be designed to meet the strict standards of kosher.

Live Sheep Sales: Australia

Loading lambs for transport

Local Transport

Loading Lambs for airfreight

Airfreight crates

Export grade "kosher" abattoir

Prime Australian "Kosher" Lamb

Potential Abattoir Location(s)

Grant Agri would work closely with respective religious and commercial partners to determine the most suitable location for a Kosher abattoir.

A location in SE Asia is recommended due to a number of factors;

  1. Proximity to Australia. A location within 10-12 hours flying time would be recommended to ensure animal welfare and reduce risk of mortalities;
  2. Greater access to, and lower costs associated with, labour;
  3. Average lower operational costs related to processing;
  4. Reduced “red-tape” and bureaucracy;
  5. Access to international shipping centres and freight hubs;
  6. Potential to remain discreet, and undisturbed from western media and/or animal rights activists against non-stun slaughter operations, and;
  7. Potential access to financial and operational incentives related to developing nations.

Benefits of SE Asian Processing.

  • Purpose built supply chain to satisfy Kosher requirements.
  • Single purpose “Kosher” abattoir.
  • Access to “Australian Lamb” under a quality assurance program.
  • Access to the entire carcass, and permitted organs, or edible offals.
  • Specific purpose abattoir ensures no contamination from additional use, or other secular processing.
  • Construction in SE Asian location reduces bureaucracy associated with Industrial Relations and Environment regulations.
  • Lower overall operating costs.
  • Ability to operate unabated and discreetly.

Our Team

Colin has over 25 years’ experience in agriculture and finance, having developed international projects related to Food Security in Africa, the Indian Ocean Rim and the Asia Pacific Region.

A professional director, Colin has held numerous posts in both private and public companies, including as a former Vice President of the Macquarie Rural Advisory Service, Australian Federal Department of Agricultural, Fisheries and Forestry, a founding director of the Food Security Development Centre in Mauritius and was a founding director of Vita Grain a hybrid rice seed technology group with operations in Bangladesh and Mauritius.

Colin is the current Group Chairman of Grant Agri Group and is a Project Director of Koagro. Grant Agri operate a closed loop Halal beef supply chain in Malaysia, exporting live cattle from Australia to Malaysia and processing for direct domestic Halal certified meat sales.

Greg Miller is one of the most respected businessmen and logistics experts in the SE Asian & Pacific Region.

The current CEO of Toll Logistics NZ Greg has lead international freight and logistics operations for commercial and NGO based clients for over 25 years. Greg has specialist knowledge of Coldstore operations and development, having constructed numerous facilities globally, and enormous expertise in food logistics particularly in developing economies. Additionally, Greg has been at the forefront of technologies related to education, logistics and systems management. He is the co-founder of Hikka technologies and developed Toll’s international online logistics management and tracking systems.

Greg is of New Zealand Maori ancestry, a powerful thinker that has worked passionately and relentlessly for the advancement Maori culture and commerce. He has held past director positions with the Tainui confederation and Kingitanga, representing the interests of the current Maori King Tuheitia Paki.

Allan Campbell is an experienced businessman with a long track record in developing international projects. He is a qualified lawyer who has specialized in corporate and securities laws, investment banking and mergers and acquisitions.

Allan was the previous Chairman of AJ Lucas Group and Australian listed drilling, pipeline, E&P, gas and construction group, and has held senior executive positions with Hoare Govett Security London, as head of the mergers and acquisitions group Europe, HSBC Group as Director Investment Bank, Wardley Australia, and Mallesons (formerly Stephen Jacques & Stephen) as solicitor partner.

Implementation

Grant Agri is a unique agribusiness group that develops commodity supply chains specifically for nations that are long term and culturally compliant.

As such it has the ability to work flexibly with governments, buyers and or investors.

Grant Agri provides enormous enterprise knowledge and skills in the livestock industry, having developed national programs in Australia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Vietnam and China. It particularly has expertise in focusing on solutions in the Asia Pacific Rim.

Importantly, Grant Agri is a licensed Australian Livestock Exporter and has the capacity to supply consistent and quality lamb to the Israel market.

Grant Agri have developed integrated agricultural commodity solutions across many countries over many years, and this project is an extension of that capacity.

Grant Agri is able to provide detailed planning for the development and implementation of a kosher abattoir and processing operation. It has developed systems and infrastructure in Malaysia and currently work with the leading abattoir designers and equipment suppliers in Australia, the USA and New Zealand.

Where to from here ?

It is important to understand the key expectations of all partners, including;

  • Religious & Cultural Expectations
  • Specific product parameters
  • Product Volume
  • Off-Take arrangements
  • Economic & Financial expectations
  • Investment

To proceed in developing this opportunity a basic pathway is outlined as follows;

Phase 1 – Heads of Agreement

An understanding between all the parties outlining the expectations and parameters of the project. An initial development budget to be agreed.

Phase 2 – Processing Country Research & Selection.

This is will require specific market and country research. Further, Government approvals will be required for respective export/import requirements.

Phase 3 – Operations and Financial Plan

Development of a project and financial plan.

Phase 4 – Investment/Execution of off-take agreements/Facility Design

Phase 5 – Construction of relevant export/processing facilities.

Phase 6 – Completion of ESCAS audit and Approved Arrangement for commencement of operations.

This document has been developed as a precursor to more formal discussions and to guide negotiations.

Contact

  • Colin Grant
  • colin@grantagri.com
  • P: +6126543 6295
  • M: +61487 895 600

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