Innovative Goondiwindi beef producers Ryan and Rebecca McDonald, and their four children Matilda, Tommy, Annabel and Elsie, are hoping to expand their beef operation by adding a 990 standard cattle unit feedlot.
Overall, the family runs 450 breeders over 2300 hectares on Victoria Park at Goondiwindi, and 2000ha on Evergreen situated between Talwood and Weengallon.
They join their breeders each October for 12 weeks to Lawson Angus bulls from Victoria.
This year, a new sire will be introduced after the couple paid $11,000 for a bull at the Clunie Range Angus sale, near Wallangra last Friday.
He will be used as a low birthweight bull suitable for heifer joining.
Mr McDonald said they aim to retain 70 replacements heifers each year for their own breeding herd.
"The balance of our weaners are all carried through to feedlot weights," he said.
"When the season permits, we also buy in trade and backgrounding cattle to grow out to the 450 kilogram weight."
Up until now, all cattle reaching feedlot weight specification were marketed to the local district feedlots through the TopX livestock agent, based in Goondiwindi.
"We really do have a desire to finish our own cattle, and have placed an application to build a feedlot on Victoria Park," he said.
Mr McDonald said among the other advantages of having their own facility, it would help them drought proof their property for the future years.
"This too would free up some of our existing country for herd expansion and we could build up our breeder numbers to 600 head," he said.
"We can supply our own cattle, but we would still need to buy in backgrounders.
"As well, we would look to work with other producers and offer a custom feeding service."
Mr McDonald said as a small family operation, they would look to collaborate with the local community to offer employment once the feedlot was built.
"We already have some cash cropping and mainly farm summer and winter forage for our backgrounders, but we would definitely need to work with other local businesses to add value to their produce."
Mr McDonald said to keep their initial capital costs down, they would be feeding the cattle with a pre-finished high-protein feedlot pellet that is manufactured locally.
The McDonald's feedlot plans will be decided at a council meeting on August 26.