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Celebrity chef fights for his beef supplier

CattleCelebrity chef Neil Perry has set up a petition to save an award-winning Victorian beef farmer from being made to move his farm.

Perry has started an online petition to try and get the Victorian government or Federal Agriculture minister Barnaby Joyce to step in and help cattle farmer David Blackmore.

Blackmore has run foul of local council for allowing his 1350 cattle to roam his 150 hectare property at Alexandra, in the Victoria Highlands, and not keeping them contained in a feedlot.

According to Perry’s petition, which has the support of fellow celebrity chef Matt Moran, Blackmore has been ordered to move by the Muirrindindi Shire Council.

“…they refused his permit and instead instructed David to shut down and move his world-best practice farm of over a decade from its current location at Alexandra in Victoria’s high country,” Perry wrote on his petition page.

Perry, who is a judge on the new Seven Network cooking reality series Restaurant Revolution, says he’s been buying from Blackmore for nine years.

“David’s Full Blood Wagyu has been a fixture in all of my restaurants since Rockpool Bar & Grill Melbourne was born in 2006 and I’ve never looked back,” he wrote.

Local residents and hobby farmers complained that, with 1350 cattle on 150 hectares, Blackmore was effectively running a commercial feedlot operation, says Perry.

“Nothing could be further from the truth, and you only have to see their cattle, as I have many times, grazing freely over green pastures and lazing under shady red gums, to understand how absurd such a comparison really is.”

Perry hopes the petition will allow Blackmore, a fifth-generation farmer, to remain on his property and “allow him to continue to bring us the finest and most sustainably produced Wagyu in Australia.”

The petition has attracted more than 1700 supporters and is on target to reach its aim of 2500.


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