This year's record cattle prices are bringing smiles to the faces of many graziers, but they are also encouraging young producers to back the beef industry.
Tom Sutton is a third-generation cattle farmer, working on his family's commercial Santa Gertrudis breeding operation across their two properties at Glenmorgan and Surat.
At Bundabar, Glenmorgan the family run replacement heifers, yearling bulls and cull cows, while their property between Roma and Surat is the main breeding block for the operation.
Across the two properties, they generally run between 800 to 1200 head of cattle, depending on the season.
Mr Sutton said the current prices have sparked a lot of change in the industry, including when graziers are deciding to turn off their cattle.
He also credited the current market success for the return of many young producers to the industry.
"The market has changed so much today and you've got so many more options than you did 10 years ago," he said.
"We used to sell off-mum a lot, but now with the cattle prices and markets it's been paying off to hold off and get to that trade steer market.
"Prices are unreal, it's very good to see. It's making myself, as a young person, and lots of other young people come back to the land which is great."
Sutton Beef recently sold 158 head of Santa Gertrudis steers at the Roma store sale this week to average 655.2/kg for 371.58kg, making $2434 per head.
Mr Sutton said the family were very pleased with the prices they received for their cattle.
"It was absolutely unreal, we were very, very happy," he said.
The Sutton family have been breeding Santa Gertrudis cattle for over 50 years and are no strangers to the Roma saleyards, as Mr Sutton said that it was the go-to sale for both his father and grandfather.
Since returning to the family operation, Mr Sutton said that he had been looking into new markets over the last few years, however the decision to sell close to home obviously paid off this week.
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