Salacoa Valley Farms Annual Brangus Bull & Female Sale

Selling

220 Registered Brangus Bulls

200 Registered Brangus Females

Offering CHOICE Open Heifers 

ELITE Bred Heifers-These are THE TOP END Pairs & 3N1’s A TOP NOTCH SET

Featuring ALL OF THE “Y” MODEL Females

Holding Nothing Back

Including full sisters to New Vision

and the dam of Hollywood to name a few!

Contacts:

Chris Heptinstall 205.363.0919

Beef in Australia

by Brad Wright

Australia’s beef industry is thriving and looks to get better as the world population is increasing exponentially.  Australian beef producers are taking “feed the world” to a whole new level as 65% of all beef produced within the country is exported.  The major export markets for beef are Asia, primarily Japan and Korea, and to the U.S.  Australia has only 26 million beef cattle and calves compared to Brazil’s 185 million head, but Australia is a narrow 2nd in beef exports to Brazil, exporting almost 3 billion pounds per year.  Australia also exports a tremendous amount of live cattle, predominantly to Indonesia.  As the world population grows and Australian breeders become increasingly efficient, the export opportunities will continue to grow.

Domestically, recent advancements of the MSA (Meat Standards Australia) grading have put a new focus on quality beef.  The retail markets have responded favorably with many only selling MSA qualified beef.  This has improved profits for those breeders that are selecting and breeding for improved carcass quality, and with further improvement, could lead to more quality meat export markets for Australian beef producers.

Over 70% of the beef cows used to meet these demands are Bos indicus or Bos indicus influenced.  The most prominent cow, especially in herds located in Northern Australia, is the Brahman cow.  Bos indicus cattle are a necessity due to their adaptability to harsh environments.  These cattle have an innate ability to survive extremely hot summers while having an inherited resistance to ticks, flies, and other insects as well as the diseases they transmit.  Bos indicus animals also have the ability to travel the long distances for forage and water.  The other factor that cannot be discounted is the Bos indicus female’s ability to regulate birth weight.  This allows these cows to be managed in very extensive conditions left to survive on their own.  Herds in the Northern Territory of Australia can exceed 100,000 head with mustering, or gathering, only happening once or twice per year to sort off and sell the progeny.  Replacement heifers are retained in almost all herds so that there is an inherent selection for cattle suited and adapted to their environment.  In most of these herds, the conditions are so tough that a 50% calf crop is considered acceptable.  However, selection for fertility and efficiency are primary selection criteria to help improve on those numbers.  Dr. Peter Barnard, a leading economist for Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), stated that a 1% increase in percent calf crop weaned, across all breeders, could add more than one billion dollars to the Australian beef industry.   There is even ongoing research for improved fixed time AI protocols that can hopefully be used in these large herds to increase pregnancy rate and reduce the number of cows that bulls must cover, similar to large programs being run in Brazil and Argentina.

The size of these operations allow for a wide variety of marketing avenues.  Many breeders are not focused on one single marketing channel, but rather many channels that allow the producer to select which market will net the most dollars depending on environmental and market value conditions.  These large breeders can export cattle live, or harvest cattle for a wide range of markets.  In good years, with plenty of grass, these calves can be grass finished to meet Japanese markets or in tough years, the cattle can be sold immediately.  Small breeders can use the store sales, similar to our sale barns, to access stockers, feeders, and packers willing to take their cattle through the next phase of production.

The important thing about Australian beef producers is that most make their living off the land.  Managing these vast amounts of land and the large numbers of cattle is definitely a full time job.  These producers are sound businessmen and cattlemen that manage risk, manage loss, and work diligently to improve their efficiencies and hopefully their bottom lines.  As the cattle numbers continue to grow and research allows for greater efficiency, Australian beef producers will continue to lead the charge in feeding beef to the world.