Early this week I caught up with my old mate Cyril Close, TopX Roma. Cyril said – “Well the start to 2016 has been a tremendous one for the Maranoa. With the rain at the end of 2015 setting the early storms of 2016 as much needed follow up you couldn't really order it much better. The buffel grass is bounding out of the ground. Most creeks and rivers have had a good run in them and almost all dams have had a much needed top up. The cropping country has a full profile of moisture ready for some good early winter crops.”
“The cattle market is maintaining a solid base from where it left off last year. Smaller numbers, as was expected once the season broke have helped to maintain this momentum. We are seeing cattle performing consistently around and above the 1 kg/day weight gain levels which at over the $3kg mark live weight for most descriptions is a welcome result from previous years. Record prices are continuing to appear in all auction market sectors with the exceptional competition that is being brought on by the bulk of feed available.”
“The lightweight steer market is consistently around the $4kg level with their sisters making over the $3.50 mark. Medium weight feeders are in the mid 300c/kg range for steers and early 300c for the heifers. Heavy feeders are consistently making $3.20 and heavy kill heifers are around the $2.70 and $2.80 mark. Heavy meat work cows have maintained a level of around the late $2.30 to early $2.40 mark while bullocks are making in the early $2.80c/kg bracket.”
“This is a pretty fair return considering not all processors are active in the market place.”
Cyril added “In my 20 years in the district I believe it is one of the better starts that we have had in that time. Let's hope that the districts further out from us that have not had this great start can benefit from it in some way. Maybe we may be able to offer more ajistment or lease country for the people less fortunate that have not had any rain, or the follow up that was much needed.”
I also caught up with Margie Neill, Newstead Surat. Margie said after tough seasonal conditions late last year, a top seasonal break with good rainfalls in early 2016, their season and the season in much of the Surat district is excellent and Newstead now looks a picture.
Vale Tommy Heinemann
Lex Heinemann advised me of the recent passing of his cousin Tommy Heinemann. Lex said a
Memorial service for Tommy Heinemann was held at Charleville last week. Tommy (son of Ernie and Doris and brother of Shirley) died recently at 84. Tommy was a schoolmate of yours truly and as Lex reminded me as kids we were both raised on goat’s milk. Among a varied career Tom owned Roylston, just outside of Charleville.
Graziers set sights on sustainability
Graziers in North Queensland will get the opportunity learn more about sustainable beef production practices at Grazing Best Management Practices (BMP) workshops in March.
AgForce Regional Manager Paul Burke said the workshops will give graziers an understanding of the program and how it can help them improve their long term productivity, profitability and sustainability.
"Grazing BMP provides best practice guidelines, outlined in the programs five modules, to help graziers improve their farm practices and demonstrate sustainable and ethical beef production."
The five modules include: soil health, animal health and welfare, grazing land management, animal production and people and business. Graziers will get the chance to begin their Grazing BMP Self-Assessment at the workshops, which involves answering questions about their current practices.
"While working through the modules graziers will be able to see how they stack up against industry standard and identify areas for improvement within their own practices to become 'at' or 'above' industry standard."
"Grazing BMP then provides a conduit for graziers to upskill or adjust their practices according to their identified areas that need improvement," Mr Burke said.
Sustainably produced food is becoming a mainstream consumer expectation rather than a novelty, the Grazing BMP program demonstrates graziers are addressing consumer demands, while continuing to protect the environment."
The workshops will also feature guest speakers, including: Noel Brinsmead from AgForce Projects; Bob Shepard and Jo Robertson from QDAF and Corrie Grimmett from Livestock Biosecurity Network.
Workshops will be held at:-
Twin Hills Racecourse - Tuesday 8 March 2016
Pentland Soldiers Hall - Thursday 10 March 2016
Workshops are free and run from 8.30am - 4pm. Registration is essential. Attendees can register online at www.agforceprojects.org.au or call (07) 3238 6048.
Roma store sale
A total of 4915 head of cattle were consigned at Roma’s Store Sale.
Weaners under 220kg topped at 409c/kg and averaged 359c/kg, while weaner steers in the 220-280kg range reached 390c and averaged 346c. Steers in the 280-350kg range reached 366c and averaged 341c, and steers in the 350-400kg range reached 348c and averaged 329c. Feeder steers in the 400-550kg range topping at 366c and averaging 319c.
Beco Pastoral Trust, Lennox Station, Jericho, sold Charolais-cross steers to 396c for 158kg to return $628/head. The Brahman heifers sold to 330c for 158kg to return $522.
L&L Kirby, 12 Mile, St George, sold Charolais-cross steers to 392c for 203kg to return $797. The Charolais-cross heifers sold to 346c for 158kg to return $547.
D&C Collinson, West Myall, Roma, sold Angus steers to 366c for 310kg to return $1135.
Scott Todd, Brigalow Downs, Bollon, sold Charolais-cross steers to 364c for 297kg to return $1083.
P&S Joliffe, Walhallow, Amby, sold Santa steers to 358c for 307kg to return $1099. Jim Blackburn, Mt Bindango, Roma, sold Charbray steers to 358c for 284kg to return $1018. The Charbray heifers sold to 326c for 278kg to return $908.
K&R Burey, Yarara, St George, sold Santa-cross steers to 358c for 273kg to return $979.