Shooter's big abattoir deal may have jumped the gun
THE director of a new kangaroo processing factory in Roma said he had major beef with the council that was hindering a "crucial" part of his supply chain.
Allan Brady established Australian Independent Game Meat in June, banking on a deal with Lucas Riley to supply kangaroo meat for human consumption and pet food.
But a development battle with the Southern Downs Regional Council has put brakes on that source.
"Lucas has spent quite a lot of money setting up to supply me with kangaroo and wild pig and he has been really restricted," Mr Brady said.
Mr Brady employs 16 people in his Roma-based abattoir, supplying a growing demand for kangaroo meat.
He is currently in discussions to supply IGA supermarkets and international pet food markets.
"It is a great source of protein and it is all free-range," he said.
Karara farmer Bruce McLeish said kangaroo shooters made economical use of meat.
"The amount that is getting hit on the side of the road at the moment is the biggest waste of an animal that someone could convert into a protein source and make money out of," he said.
But Mr Brady is concerned without Mr Riley's input, his supply will be compromised.
The flow-on effect has also hit a Stanthorpe-based kangaroo shooter, because Mr Brady's abattoir cannot afford to send weekly delivery trucks to the Southern Downs without the promise of Mr Riley's product as well.
"Lucas went ahead on me saying I would definitely buy his product and I set a certain number that he would supply to me and I built my business on that," he said.
Mr Riley's application for a material change of use for his Cunningham Highway property was approved in July, subject to conditions.
Prior to that, in March, the council issued Mr Riley with a final notice to stop his "unlawful" storage of game meat.
But Mr Riley said the council had a chance to do something to help the farmers who were struggling in the drought by assisting his business.
"I have farmers ringing me up crying because the roos are flogging their paddocks," he said.