Quality cattle crush records
HIGH-quality Northern Rivers cattle have ensured records were again smashed at the annual Two-Day Weaner and Grower Steers Sale at Casino.
At the saleyards on Thursday and Friday, almost 7600 weaners were sold for a total of $4.59 million.
The figure crushed record-breaking sales of $4.1 million in 2011.
George and Fuhrmann Real Estate managing director Darren Perkins said last week's sales were "well above expectations".
"At $4.59 million, it's a record in the history of weaner sales on the North Coast," he said. "I would have thought everyone was pretty happy with the sale."
The weaners, all under the age of 12 months, were sold mainly to buyers from Queensland, Victoria and South Australia. However, several international buyers also expressed interest this year. About 2200 Hereford and 5700 European and Bos indicus-cross weaners were sold.
Casino cattle farmers Paul and Jenny Fuhrmann fetched the highest price of $870 for each of their Charolais weaners.
High summer rainfall created uncertainty for cattle farmers in the region but Mr Perkins said stocks were resilient and remained in great shape.
He attributed the quality of Northern Rivers cattle and succ
essful sales figures to farmers' new production tactics.
"There's a lot of people who are concentrating on the marketing for their weaner sales. People are targeting specific markets," he said.
"People are concentrating more on the uniformity and quality of their cattle and should be commended on the quality of their beef."
Mr Perkins said the Northern Rivers was lucky to be one of Australia's unique cattle breeding regions. "A lot of it is to do with diversification in different breeds," he said. "We've also got high rainfall, so we're able to run more livestock than most other areas."
Since 2010, overall sales figures from the Weaner and Grower Steer Sale have increased by $500,000 annually. However, Mr Perkins wouldn't predict whether the trend would continue and said the local cattle industry's fate remained largely in the hands of seasons.