WHEN Alan Acton stood up to speak to the gathered crowd at Fitzroy Vale, his Rockhampton property, he looked out at with an unmistakably proud stare.
Mr Acton and his wife Jennifer purchase the property in 2009, after a few failed attempts before that – starting way back in 1992.
Now the Actons run multiple successful beef properties in the Central Queensland region, and on Tuesday they opened up Fitzroy Vale to the World Brahman Congress delegates.
Mr Acton said his property and business was a source of great pride for him.
“Wilpeena Cattle Company is owned by myself, Jennifer and the boys here and we’re very proud of it. Oh, Jessica too. Our daughter too,” Mr Acton said.
“We are all very proud of our properties, we have got a couple of properties out west of here as well.”
The Actons live near Dingo, and use Fitzroy Vale as a “grower factory”.
“We run nearly 5000 head of steers here, we use it as a grower factory and we land them here about 12 months, they probably do about 0.5 of a kilogram a day and we take them up to about 380-400kg and then we shift them out home,” Mr Acton said.
“And we leave them there another 12 months and then we turn them off as bullocks.”
Mr Acton’s sons Daniel and James are fifth generation cattle producers, with the family business originally starting not far from where Fitzroy Vale is now.
“We sell 10,000 bullocks a year, and I’m very proud of that,” Mr Acton said.
“We’re quite economical - we only have the two sons here and three workers. We’ve got it worked out pretty well.
“I find in my time that I’ve gone into trading cattle, I call myself a cattle fattener, it’s all about timing. When you buy your cattle and when you sell your cattle.
“You make half your money when you buy your cattle and the other half when you sell them. That’s where some people go wrong.”
Mr Acton said the family generally buy cattle in at around the 250kg-280kg mark, and then fatten them before selling straight to the processors.
“I mainly go to the three major processing works – Teys, JBS or Nippon,” he said.
“Most of the smaller processors can’t handle our numbers.”