Paper 110

Coordination issues in Thailand's Broiler Value Chain

Soma Voeun and Garry Griffith

Poultry production (predominately broilers) is the most important livestock industry in Thailand. It is the major source of meat and generates substantial employment and income. There are a number of different production systems ranging from modern integrated commercial systems to smallholder production systems. However, the Thai poultry value chain, in general, suffers from several major issues or constraints affecting value chain coordination. These problems include reduced availability and rising prices of feedgrains, poor infrastructure, and food safety issues. For feedgrains, more research into more productive crops and alternative crops is likely to help. Regarding social and physical infrastructure, the government could usefully play a greater role in building more road networks, setting up power grids and securing water sources. Finally, food safety concerns can be resolved by upgrading the value chain to closed production systems, focussing on biosecurity measures and compartmentalization.

Paper 111

Using continuous improvement and innovation principles for strategic planning in a government department

G.R. Griffith and J.D. Mullen

Continuous Improvement and Innovation (CI&I) is both a management process and a management strategy. In this paper we describe how CI&I principles have been used in a strategic planning context by the research economists’ group in the NSW Department of Primary Industries. We provide some background on the development of CI&I as a management concept and describe the steps involved in implementing the CI&I process in this context. We conclude with some observations about the usefulness of this approach for planning in a government department.

Paper 112

Ord Scheme Economics

Seth Molinari

The Australian federal government released its ‘Our North, Our Future:  White Paper on Developing Northern Australia’ on June 17, 2015.
With regard to the Ord River in northeast Western Australia, the White Paper envisages an expansion in the size of the existing irrigation area (the Ord Scheme).  This could create the potential to achieve scale to enhance both the profitability and economic resilience of the region [Australian Government, 2015]. This optimism is in spite of the Ord Scheme having had a repeated history of failures while receiving government subsidies totalling well over $1 billion since the 1950s [Dent et al., 2015].
This paper will examine the economic viability of the continued interest in developing irrigated agriculture in the Ord area against the lessons of past performance. It will also consider the impact of increased expectation that externalities be included in assessing project success, as well as the potential effects of climate change.

Paper 113

Processes for Measuring, Communicating and Valuing Eating Quality and Saleable Meat Yield in the Australian Beef Value Chain: Current Status and Future Opportunities

Doljanin, I.A., Thompson, J.M., Griffith, G.R. and Fleming, E.M.

The traditional measure of meat quality has largely been associated with increased presence of intramuscular fat, or marbling, to enhance flavour, juiciness and tenderness. The research collated by Meat Standards Australia demonstrated the interconnectivity of pre and post-slaughter treatments with the traditional measurements of marbling, intramuscular fat and ossification on consumer palatability scores. Yet, in beef pricing systems, quantity measures are based simply on carcass weight, not the yield of saleable cuts from this carcass. Implementing a process of traceability throughout the value chain and incorporating an eating-quality and saleable-meat yield-focused payment for carcasss can achieve three complementary objectives: (1) deliver a product tailored to consumer needs; (2) address traceability concerns to guarantee food safety; and (3) accurately communicate carcass yield and quality combined into one payment scale that can be used to facilitate improvement throughout the beef value chain.

Paper 114

Industry Clusters and Food Value Chains: Can the Literature on Local Collective Failure be used as a Guide for Assessing and Overcoming Value Chain Failure?

Stuart Mounter, Euan Fleming, Garry Griffith and Bligh Grant

In this paper the literature on industry clusters as a response to local collective failure is reviewed as a way of enhancing knowledge about how failure of food value chains to perform efficiently can be analysed and overcome. The conclusion is that there is much in the local collective failure literature that assists in an understanding of, and is consistent with, the concepts of value chain failure, value chain externalities and value chain goods. Four potential areas for enhancing the analysis of value chains by accessing this literature are noted: defining the boundary between chain failure and local collective failure; improving joint action among parties interested in overcoming chain failure; augmenting the processes of knowledge creation and application in value chains; and improving the governance of value chains. The key point is that the ability of local collective or value chain partners to produce chain goods and internalise positive chain externalities depends directly on the nature and intent of the joint action by the partners: will they cooperate or not, and, if they do cooperate, how and to what extent will they do so?