Sheep Producers Australia (SPA) and WoolProducers Australia (WPA) lead the Sheep Sustainability Framework , while Australian Wool Innovation and Meat & Livestock Australia provide funding, as well as strategic and secretariat support.
The Sheep Sustainability Framework was designed and developed by the Sustainability Steering Group (SSG) which includes strong representation from across sheep producing regions and the wool and meat value chain. During design of the SSF, the group identified focus areas and priority issues related to sustainable Australian sheep meat and wool production.
Importantly, there was also considerable input from industry representatives and stakeholders, including customers, government, interest groups, technical experts and investors.
A consultative Committee, made up of representatives from these groups, was formed in late 2022, and will provide ongoing input to the Sheep Sustainability Framework . The first SSF industry forum was held in March 2023 where participants discussed issues specific to internal stakeholder groups. Expert working groups will be convened when necessary.
The industry reports progress against the Sheep Sustainability Framework each year, with the first Annual Report launched in July 2022 at the National Sheep Show in Bendigo. Separate performance indicators are included for the sheep meat and wool sectors as relevant and where data exists.
A set of core principles guide the operation and administration of the Sheep Sustainability Framework:
- Transparency — Industry provides an open and honest picture of practice and performance (including improvement, no change or decline), using the most appropriate and robust data available.
- Accountability — Industry is accountable for its practices and performance as demonstrated via the Sheep Sustainability Framework and is committed to continuous improvement.
- Inclusivity — The constructive views and feedback from industry (including producers, processors and other value chain participants), customers, retailers, special interest groups, government and investors as to how industry can improve practice and performance are valued and considered.
- Credibility — Decisions on Framework design are with consideration of topics identified as important or material by the industry and its stakeholders. Reporting against Framework priorities and indicators is based on robust evidence.
- Practicality — The Sheep Sustainability Framework works within the industry’s scope of influence to make changes that encourage improvement and adoption of best practice. The indicators can or have the potential to be monitored and managed. The Sheep Sustainability Framework works to harmonise with other relevant industry strategies to avoid duplication or contradiction.
- Relevance — The Sheep Sustainability Framework ’s priorities and indicators are aligned with topics identified as important or material to the industry and its stakeholders and are within the industry’s scope of influence. The Sheep Sustainability Framework will adapt over time to remain relevant, to ensure it is useful and highlight areas for improvement.