Exploring the wellbeing of beef producers: a multidisciplinary approach to sustainable grazing

This investigation is part of a broader industry funded research project led by the QUT School of Biology and Environmental Science, which aims to deliver an analytically sensitive and cost-effective approach to quantifying carbon sequestration.

The emergence of carbon markets is serving as a catalyst for changing land management practices as graziers engage in carbon sequestration and other ecosystem services alongside beef production.

The ‘producer wellbeing’ component of this study taps into the lived experience of beef producers, who are on the frontline of (re)aligning land and cattle management practices to an emerging carbon economy. This qualitative component of the study examines subjective accounts of wellbeing including satisfaction with standard of living, sense of life achievements, contentment, security, community connectedness, personal health and empowerment.

Wellbeing is central to how graziers adapt and thrive in a changing environment.

Wellbeing occurs within a context of an ageing farming demographic, fluctuating market prices for beef, high input costs, increased scrutiny of the sustainability of food production systems and a rapidly changing climate. The latter has seen producers experience associated ‘shocks’ such as covid, drought, floods and fire, as well as intermittent ‘good times’ with high rainfall and increases in the price of beef.

Understanding the complex interplay of environment, economy, sustainable livelihoods and well-being can inform land management practices, policy and supply chain relationships, creating co-benefits for all stakeholders, including the environment.


Time controlled Grazing for Soil C sequestration and improved ecosystem services


Picture to the right – Pasture with bottle tree (Credit: Carol Richards)

Chief Investigators