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The business of beef on Cape York

Beefing up your business was the focus of seven Cape York graziers at a Business workshop hosted in Lakeland in June.

The event focused on improving record-keeping skills for beef businesses and identifying the areas of business management where producers can take control to increase performance.

Ian McLean from BushAgribusiness led the workshop, sharing valuable insights from the Australian Beef Report and his many years of experience working as an advisor for beef businesses.

Key factors in consideration were having more productive herds, which means having cattle that are better at turning grass into beef, targeting expenditure more effectively, and using labour more efficiently.

One of the biggest challenges for many producers is having appropriate accounting on herd numbers.

Without these numbers, graziers can’t calculate the grazing load, can’t calculate herd productivity (e.g. how many kilograms of beef is my land producing, mortality rates, or reproductive rates), can’t calculate herd value, or business income.

This is where the Herdflow calculator comes in. Ian has developed a simple tool, an excel spreadsheet, which allows graziers to track sales, purchases, births, deaths, and transfers. Attendees were able to try this tool out for themselves in an interactive exercise.

Underpinning all this business management are good grazing practices. A successful, long-term beef business will maximise performance when using appropriate stocking rates.

The message of the day echoed by all attendees was to improve their herd information and recording keeping practices.

This event is a joint initiative between AgForce Queensland and Cape York Natural Resource Management, and funded by the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal

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