Estimating the economic implications for grazing properties in the Mackay Whitsunday catchments of practice changes to more sustainable landscapes

In the Mackay Whitsunday region, the dominant grazing based operations are small intensive systems that heavily utilise soil, nutrient and chemical management practices. To improve water quality entering the Great Barrier Reef, graziers are being encouraged to adopt improved management practices. However, while there is good understanding of the management changes required to reach improved practice classification levels, there is poor understanding of the likely economic implications for a grazier seeking to move from a lower level classification to the higher level classifications. This paper provides analysis of the costs and benefits associated with adoption of intensive grazing best management practices to determine the effect on the profitability and economic sustainability of grazing enterprises, and the economic viability of capital investment to achieve best management. The results indicate that financial incentives are likely to be required to encourage smaller graziers to invest in changing their management practices, while larger graziers may only require incentives to balance the risk involved with the transition to better management practices.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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