Nick Radford, with the assistance of 3 other full time worker, has run his business ‘Radford Pastoral’ at Penola in the South East region of South Australia for the last 15 years. Here he runs Angus 1600 cows and 600 Angus heifers joined to Angus bulls sourced from the same region. The business, originally based out of Broken Hill in NSW moved to the region due to the climate and cattle finishing ability of the area.
Nick runs a 100% beef cattle operation. Cows are purely pasture fed on chicory, rye and clover, with home grown lucerne hay and haylage being provided as supplementary feeding if required, with the steers value added through improved pasture on our centre pivots. Some of the steers and cull heifers are sent to feedlots to be processed for grain fed programs while others are grown out on farm and sent into the Angus Pure program.
‘The luxury of having irrigated pasture allows us to be flexible within the industry. Obviously the seasons have a big impact on our markets. If the rain cuts out early we will wean sooner than we usually would. This lets the cows have a good break before their next calving, and keep the calves continue to develop and grow under the centre pivots’ Nick outlines.
‘As a beef cattle producer I believe the most important aspect of raising beef cattle is to do everything properly, taking no shortcuts. If I want the best cattle I get the best bulls. If I’m going to improve pasture I aim to make it the best. If you do things right everything seems to fall into place’ Nick explains.
‘One of the many things I love about living on the land is that you can be in charge of your own destiny. You only get out what you put in. The satisfaction that I get from seeing a calf born, to the end result of a shiny steer.’
Swan Brothers – Anthony and Craig Swan
Anthony and Craig Swan, along with the assistance of another full time worker run the Swan Brother Pty Ltd cattle operation in the Upper South East Region of South Australia, near Meningie. These first generation farming brothers manage on the property ‘Sheoak Lodge’ where they run 800 Angus breeders, and background 300 steers a year to supply into the Angus Pure Brand. Steers are sent regularly between February and May, with large runs being sent also on July and August.
The Angus breeders are fed on pastures, while the steers are backgrounded on pastures and silage.
Aside from producing quality cattle the brothers also produce 1100 tonnes of irrigated Lucerne hay, 30 hectares of mustard seed for export and 200 ha of cereal seed for their own use.
Anthony say ‘To us the most important part of raising cattle is to have good, healthy stock that meet the market specifications that we are targeting.’
‘We love living on the land. Managing all aspect of production, as well as developing reliable procedures for all conditions experienced on the farm from marketing and sales of our stock, seed and hay, as well cropping, and challenges that come with the seasons such as droughts.’ Anthony outlines.