Australia’s first global sheep sustainability framework, launched earlier this year, has a new chair of the steering group, following an open request for expressions of interest.
Verity Morgan-Schmidt will assume this role for a two-year term following the departure of the inaugural president, Professor Bruce Allworth.
Ms Morgan-Schmidt is from a wool and cultivation company in Western Australia.
With a Master of Arts (Policy) in Sustainable Development, Ms. Morgan Schmidt was also the inaugural CEO of the award-winning and fast-growing advocacy group, Farmers for Climate Action, served as a Senior Executive (Livestock) with WA Farmers , led the weekly sales. for Elders in WA and at one point held the title of Australia’s youngest wool auctioneer.
Commenting on the appointment, Ms Morgan-Schmidt, who currently operates a farm in beautiful Mary Valley, Queensland, said she was incredibly proud to lead the Sheep Sustainability Steering Group in a difficult but exciting time for the production of sheep meat and wool in Australia.
“As global markets increasingly demand transparency and demonstrable sustainability benchmarks, the Australian sheep industry has an extraordinary story to share,” said Morgan-Schmidt.
“By balancing the environment, animal welfare, our people, and long-term financial sustainability, the Sheep Sustainability Framework highlights the critical work of producers and supply chains, and positions the industry to be globally recognized for the sustainable production of the world’s best mutton and wool, now and in the future.
“The Australian sheep industry has long demonstrated its commitment to meeting and exceeding consumer expectations and the Sheep Sustainability Framework provides an important vehicle to demonstrate this work.
“I congratulate and thank the outgoing Chair, Professor Bruce Allworth, the founding members of the Steering Group and Meat and Livestock Australia and Australian Wool Innovation for their extraordinary work and support in the development stages of this long overdue initiative.
“As the new president, my priority will be to ensure that rubber is indeed on the road by strengthening relationships, increasing stakeholder engagement throughout the supply chain and making Sheep Sustainability Framework a globally recognized example of Australian industry leadership.
The Australian Sheep Sustainability Framework is a world first and is designed specifically for and by the Australian sheep industry and its supply chain. The industry-led framework identifies sustainability priorities, demonstrates best practices, and uses evidence to track industry progress against key metrics.
The framework is the product of extensive and targeted industry engagement and consultation by the industry appointed Sheep Sustainability Framework Steering Group. The framework outlines the industry’s commitment to sustainability through four key themes: Caring for Our Sheep, Improving the Environment and Climate, Caring for Our Employees, Customers and Communities, and Ensuring an Industry financially resilient.