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TAS Country : March 24th 2011
News Friday, March 25, 2011 Tasmanian Country 17 Prize Shorthorns bag a swag KAROLIN MacGREGOR EXEMPLARY: The Crack's Japan ox entrant was champion on the hoof. SHORTHORNS are proving to be a winning breed for Roan and Joy Crack who recently took home a swag of prizes from the King Island Show hoof and hook competition. The couple, who run about 170 Shorthorn breeding cows, have been competitors for many years. This year the couple's team won a number of classes including the light weight yearling heifer, lightweight yearling steer the heavyweight yearling steer and the Japanese Ox classes on the hoof. The Crack's Japan ox entrant then went on to be named champion on the hoof and their heavy yearling steer was sashed reserve champion on the hoof. Their success continued in the carcase section when they won the Japan ox class, the heavy yearling steer and the heavy yearling heifer awards. They placed second and third in the other two lightweight sections. The winning heavyweight yearling steer which dressed out at an impressive 324.5kg had an eye muscle area of 95 square centimetres and a marbling score of three and was awarded the Champion On the Hook award. The Cracks also won the reserve champion on the hook award. Mr Crack, who works as a buyer for Greenham Tasmania, said most of their cattle were Shorthorn and some also had a small amount of Maine Anjou breeding. ''My dad started breeding Shorthorns and my cows are pretty good now, so I'd rather stick with them than try and change to anything else,'' he said. ''The Shorthorns are normally pretty quiet and they're easy calving, my cows are really quiet and they seem to do fairly well.'' Mr Crack said three of their winning cattle were sired by bulls from the Loane family's well known Dunroan Shorthorn stud near Devonport. All their cattle in the competition were grass fed, but they were not just pulled out of the paddock a few days before the show. ''I start selecting the better ones probably two or three months before and just keep and eye on them to see how they're growing out,'' he said. Weaners wow buyers market TALK Richard Bailey THERE were more than 2600 top- quality calves at the second of the annual weaner calf sales at Powran- na, this time held by Elders. The first three or four rows of steer calves were mainly Angus-bred, al- most all had weights displayed and sold to very strong local and inter- state competition. The heaviest calves made $840 to $1025, medium weights $760 to $875, lighter $700 to $810 and a few very light $600 to $710 a head. There were very few steers that sold for less than $725 a head. Heifers also sold well, the best making $700 to $870 and lighter $605 to $735. The good news for the Tasmanian processing sector is that only about 20 per cent were bought by interstate restockers or feeders. With rain over the past couple of days, the autumn almost seems assured, and one would think that the local interest will stay strong. Yet I think interstate buyers are going to have to try to take a bigger percent- age out of the remaining sales. To my knowledge there have been very few calves heading to Victoria's western districts. I know their season is also very good, so one could think there might be added interest. Beef exports are going well, with an apparent general shortage of beef worldwide. In Australia the national adult cattle slaughter for January fell to a 22-year low, as the combination of holiday plant closures and record flooding across southern Queensland prevented the processing of cattle. At 429,290 head for January, the adult cattle slaughter rate was 11 per cent below last year and 19 per cent (or 98,000 head) below the January average for the past five years. In contrast to Queensland, some states recorded increases, with South Australia up 5 per cent, and Tas- mania up 32 per cent on last year at 16,243 head. Many producers are facing interest- ing decisions on the breeding herds and flocks, and in many cases farmers are keeping old cows for an extra year and their old ewes for another lamb. The dilemma is that prices for cull cows (140c to 160c/kg) and old ewes ($70 to $100 a head) are high and the temptation is to at least sell some. 6452 2701 www.greenham.com.au Prompt payment always at Greenham As I write this we are copping a blustering easterly in Smithton that has brought more rainfall over the past 24 hours. With the ground still warm we can expect pasture growth to continue for a while yet, setting the scene for some good fattening opportunities over winter. WHERE TO FOR JAPAN? The scenes of devastation in Japan were a shock to everybody. As you would have read in past Corners and newsletters, we have some excellent customers in Japan and we have grown very close to them. Many of you will have met members of the Aleph delegation who were here late last year. I m happy to report that all these customers and their families are safe. In the early days after the earthquake and tsunami we heard reports of panic buying and shelves being cleared, but that has subsided and the market is very quiet. Frozen product is looking strong but chilled beef is a real unknown. We just don t know what will happen in the short to medium future. KOREA STILL DIGESTING EARLIER PURCHASES Last month I thought there might be some positive signs in Korea but in fact, both the chilled and frozen markets have dropped a fair bit since then. Importers are still holding stocks acquired early in the year, causing liquidity problems. Once this bulge moves through the chain we may see some improvement. THANKS, COLES With a larger than normal orders for HGP free product, our domestic sales are bubbling along very strongly at present. Coles decision to stock HGP free meat has changed the market in one fell swoop. It has alerted consumers to the existence of HGP s with the result that many of them are now asking for more natural products. That isn t doing us any harm at all here in HGP free Tasmania -- it s keeping our prices up and volumes moving quite nicely. Another interesting observation is the push by some larger end users to support Australian companies as the issue of food security takes centre stage. WILL IT LAST? Many farmers keep asking me if present prices are sustainable. Predicting the future is fraught with danger, but I believe we will see current prices holding for quite some time. I think we re in a new era of supply and demand with herd rebuilding going on both here and in many other countries. It s placing a premium value on young cattle which inevitably flows on to the whole herd. Peter Greenham Greenham s Corner From the Manager, Peter Greenham You can sell to us liveweight at: • Smithton Greenham Plant, Mon--Fri, 9am--noon • Osmaston 670 Osmaston Rd, Mon, 9am--noon • Howth Kennaglen, Tues, 9am--noon • Ringarooma 69 East Maurice Rd, Wed, 9am--noon Like to know more? Then just ring: Cade Ebdon Circular Head 0409 437 950 Nick Strickland Central / N-W 6433 3230 0417 335 843 Ian Millen Central East/North-East 6344 8915 0408 133 685 Ron Crack King Island 0400 895 133 Michael Ardle South 0428 134 122 Wayne Oliver Statewide 6362 3682 0419 358 441 Graeme Pretty Livestock Controller 0418 505 347 RGM/GRT35277
March 17th 2011
March 31st 2011