The upcoming Neogen Angus Foundation Tour, slated for a tour of South East Queensland in July, is fortunate enough to be visiting leading seedstock production enterprise, Ascot Angus.
Jim and Jackie Wedge, principals of Ascot Angus, aim to breed bulls for the commercial environment and adhere to rigorous selection criteria, particularly focused on ease of calving, growth and carcase quality. They are ideally positioned to give insight into producing an article highly sought after by the commercial Northern beef cattle industry.
Jim and Jackie Wedge, principals of Ascot Angus, aim to breed bulls for the commercial environment and adhere to rigorous selection criteria, particularly focused on ease of calving, temperament, weight for age and carcase quality. They also focus on breeding animals with a slick coat type to suit the Queensland market. They are ideally positioned to give insight into producing an article highly sought after by the commercial Northern beef cattle industry.
“We have a breeding herd of approximately 300 stud Angus females and 200 stud Charolais females. We leave no stone unturned to ensure our Bulls are fit for purpose, including independent structural and temperament assessment & semen and morphology testing. All our females are AI’d using leading genetics from both Australia and overseas.” explains Jackie.
“It is important for young people entering the industry to realise the role that seedstock producers play in regard to efficiency, profitability and sustainability of the beef industry in general, achieved by increasing genetic progress & keeping up with the latest innovations” adds Jim.
Also on the itinerary is Dunmore Pastoral, a progressive commercial producer in the Darling Downs region. Owned and operated by the Clay family, they utilise Angus genetics in a dedicated breeding herd to supply a local feedlot, while also operating a trading operation over three properties.
Tim Clay explains their decision to utilise Angus genetics as one arising due to performance.
“The marketing of Angus is backed up by facts and they perform. The feedback we get from feedlot clients on our Angus cattle is that they do better than other breeds and the product coming out the other end of the supply chain is superior” Tim says.
“Angus cattle today is a far cry from what they were 40 years ago and that is because of the market focussed breeding” he adds.
“The Northern bred Angus cattle are a lot better adapted to the environment than what they were and are now very well adapted. It is good for younger Angus breeders to have an understanding about Queensland’s demand for Angus cattle from a seedstock perspective, as well as our ability to commercially produce a high-quality Angus product” he explains.
The tour encompasses all facets of beef production, exploring the application of genetic technology through the supply chain. Complimenting the visits to Ascot and Dunmore Pastoral, the tour includes visits to the new Neogen Australasia DNA lab, Stockyard feedlot, the NH Foods Oakey Beef Exports abattoir as well as the retail outlet Super Butcher and a presentation from Meat Standards Australia.