Strengthening partnerships with Vietnam in the beef cattle sectors

Associate Professor Dominic Smith from Griffith Agribusiness has been awarded an Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Economic Engagement Grant (AVEG) for the project, Reimagining collaboration in the Australian and Vietnam beef cattle sectors.

Researchers from Griffith Agribusiness, Focus Group Go, and Vietnam’s Institute for Policy and Strategy for Agriculture and Rural Development (IPSARD) will collaborate with government and industry representatives from both countries to support the deepening of collaboration between Vietnam and Australia’s cattle and beef industries, and to develop stronger partnerships for increased trade, investment, and innovation.

A/Prof Dominic Smith with project partners and industry and government representatives at the kick-off meeting in Hanoi.

“Australia has been a major player in supplying beef and live cattle to Vietnam, particularly in the last decade, but the post-pandemic period has seen increased formalisation of trade patterns coupled with increasing consumer demands for higher meat quality, traceability, and food safety,” Associate Professor Smith said.

“The rapid evolution of cattle and beef value chains and consumer demand across the region, combined with changes in profitability of short-term lot feeding Australian cattle in Vietnam, means that the trading relationship between the two countries needs to evolve into a collaborative partnership.

“We aim to establish a multi-stakeholder analysis platform in Vietnam which will undertake research to increase understanding and provide critical evidence, insights, and guidance to government and industry.

“An associated information gathering network across South-East Asia will collect market data and intelligence through beef and cattle supply chains, including formal and informal channels.”

A/Prof Smith at the MOU signing in Hanoi, Vietnam.

The $550,000 project is funded the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, under the Australia — Vietnam Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy, and formally commenced with a kick-off meeting in Hanoi in July.

The July meeting also acted as the MOU signing between Griffith University and IPSARD, designed to facilitate the development and implementation of future research and training activities in the fields of agribusiness, rural development and policy and strategy in agriculture and rural development.

More detailed aims of the MOU will be elaborated in an umbrella five-year plan encompassing the aspirations of both parties for annual targets for research, training, and development activities.

In addition to the multi-stakeholder platform within the Reimagining collaboration in the Australian and Vietnam beef cattle sectors project, it will also include a major international symposium in Hanoi in November 2023 and a visit to Australia by key industry and government representatives in May 2024.

The project will conclude with a bi-lateral Policy Dialogue scheduled for late May 2024.