Liberal backbencher Sussan Ley is not expecting a “hostile” audience at Wednesday’s North East Agriculture dinner.
The fourth in the series of dinners hosted by Member for Indi Cathy McGowan will be held at Benalla Bowling Club at 6pm looking at the future of the sheep industry in Australia.
Ms Ley, the Member for Farrer, will talk about her Private Members Bill to end live sheep exports.
“I would never see a room full of farmers as a hostile environment, I would see a room full of farmers as being very much my people,” Ms Ley said, “I’m looking forward to explaining in further detail my arguments.”
Ms Ley said she had met with farmers across her electorate to talk about her position on live sheep export.
“What I’m finding is there’s a lot of misinformation out there,” she said.
“When I explain where I’m coming from and why I think this is important, and that it is actually pro farmer not anti farmer, I’m getting a lot of understanding.
“But not everyone will agree with me, of course.”
Sheep Producers Australia chair Chris Mirams will also speak at the dinner.
SPA, which evolved out of Sheepmeat Council of Australia, is the peak industry organisation for sheep and lamb producers.
Mr Mirams believed the sheep industry had a bright future in North East Victoria.
“What a great spot it is to be part of a really exciting industry that’s moving forward … I reckon the sheep industry’s steaming ahead on all eight cylinders,” Mr Mirams said.
Mr Mirams would prefer to see how Wednesday’s meeting progressed regarding the live sheep export debate, however Sheep Producers Australia was behind the industry.
“Sheep Producers Australia are supportive of the live ex trade, we think it can continue,” he said.
“But our support is continual upon satisfactory welfare outcomes and we support the minister in his endeavours to ensure that happens.”
Ms McGowan said the regular industry dinners provided a good way for the agriculture sector to share ideas and she was looking forward to hearing views about the sheep industry.
Tickets for Wednesday’s dinner are available at trybooking.com/WVRQ or for information phone Karen Nankervis on 0407 261 927