Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Butchers Beef Up Trade

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Butchers Beef Up Trade

Article excerpt

Byline: Troy Kippen

SUPERMARKETS are restocking, but it was local butchers who were there to save the day with red meat supplies after Cyclone Debbie.

George Street Butcher Shoppe co-owner Allyson Ward said the local supply chain wasn't too disrupted, meaning there was plenty of beef and pork, but stocks of chicken and lamb were running low because it was sourced from southern markets.

It was the same message from butchers right across the region.

"We get meat from our own farm at Bloomsbury and it's processed at Kuttabul," Mrs Ward said.

Mrs Ward said there has been a "roaring" trade since the cyclone, but without customer support year round there could be no meat anywhere in the next crisis.

"It's the small butcheries supplying the meat right now. We have been providing meat to SES and Ergon workers," she said.

The butchery sold 90kg of bacon to Ergon for its workers in the region doing clean-up work.

"All this supermarket meat is coming up from down south. People are coming in saying 'thank god you have meat', but they also need to support us year round," she said.

"What happens in the next crisis if we are gone?"

Kuttabul Abattoir owner John McGill supplies meat to most of Mackay's butchers and some to IGA.

"The big supermarkets don't buy locally... they are not allowed to. They would rather go without than buy from a local supplier," Mr McGill said.

The Daily Mercury contacted Woolworths about sourcing from local suppliers when its traditional supply chain was cut, but the company did not answer specific questions about the supply chain.

A Woolworths spokesperson said the supermarket chain worked hard to ensure appropriate levels of stock were available for customers all year round.

"During extreme weather events stock levels can be impacted, however; we have been able to replenish stores quickly and expect this to continue," they said.

"At Woolworths we are proud to support local farmers. …

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