Port Alma Shipping Terminal from above. Live exports began in December last year and have seen 31, 657 head of cattle exported.
Port Alma Shipping Terminal from above. Live exports began in December last year and have seen 31, 657 head of cattle exported. Allan Reinikka ROK030719aportalm

First live exports out of Rockhampton exceed 31,000 head

MORE THAN 30,000 head of cattle have been exported from Port Alma since the introduction of live export six months ago.

The latest figures from the Gladstone Ports Corporation have detailed 15,830 tonnes equating to 31,657 head of cattle exported since the first shipment in December 2018.

It was the first time live export was conducted out of Port Alma and there are ships leaving around once a month.

The cattle are trucked to Port Alma in B-doubles only (no road train access allowed) and they are directly transferred from the truck to the vessel.

Agriculture industry peak body, AgForce has been supportive of the new live exports.

In speaking with their members and local graziers, they say the response has been welcoming.

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Cheetham Salt, Bajool.
Cheetham Salt, Bajool. Allan Reinikka ROK030719aportalm

"Graziers are very supportive as processing space is hard to get in Central Queensland,” AgForce cattle board president Will Wilson said.

"The export trade offers Central Queensland producers additional markets for their cattle.

"Producers have been very positive because the specifications for the cattle are far better than local market options.”

Previously, Central Queensland graziers were travelling or sending their cattle to Townsville for live export.

"There was absolutely a need for live export facilities in Central Queensland,” Mr Wilson said.

"Meat processing facilities in Rockhampton have been fully booked for years.

"If we didn't have those facilities in Rockhampton, the market would be suppressed because it is a supply and demand market.”

The addition of the Port Alma export has grown the Gladstone Ports Corporation's trade.

More than than 124.8million tonne of trade has been recorded across the corporations three port precincts in Gladstone, Rockhampton and Bundaberg this past financial year.

"These results are good news for Queenslanders in terms of jobs, economic growth and international trade,” a spokesperson said.

"We are cementing our reputation as the manager of Australia's premier multi-commodity ports.

"Gladstone Ports Corporation has recently doubled the number of shipping containers exported through Gladstone and we've introduced cattle exports from Port Alma.

"This is great news for local producers in Central Queensland.

"It's great for jobs and the economy.”