More than 160 Wagyu beef producers were on hand to hear the latest on the Sire Progeny Test program developed in partnership between the Australian Wagyu Association and Kerwee Lot Feeders at Jondaryan.
The visit to the Hart family’s Kerwee Feedlot was part of the Australian Wagyu Association’s field day and annual general meeting held on Monday.
General manager feedlot operations Kerwee Lot Feeders, Steve Martin, said the trial was about feed efficiency being vital to profitability.
“Wagyu cattle are long-fed for 450 days, and feed efficiency is more critical than any other breed,” Mr Martin said.
The test will seek to prove the next generation of sires necessary for the ongoing breed improvement and profitability, particularly for the growing number of Australian cattle producers turning to Wagyu genetics.
In a first for any progeny test in Australia, the net feed intake (NFI) raw data will be generated in a commercial feedlot environment.
“Kerwee has fitted GrowSafe feed bins in two pens enabling NFI testing of 180 progeny at the one time, with the ability to handle three feed intakes over a year,” Mr Martin said.
“At least five progeny from each of two Wagyu sires from a client, will be custom fed for 450 days with NFI, and all feeding data reports available to the owners.
Once the steers leave Kerwee after 450 days, they will be customer service killed at the John Dee processing facility at Warwick.
“Kerwee will also be responsible for all carcase analysis which will include Japanese digital camera imaging, measuring the eye muscle area, marbling percentage, and marbling fineness,” Mr Martin said.
“Full Aus-meat and MSA data will also be made available.
“Kerwee has long strived to be an innovative leader in the Australian feedlot industry, working to provide the very best service for our feeding and branded customers.
“The introduction of GrowSafe feed bins is our latest development in exceptional customer service, and efficient cost of grain is vital to our production system.”
Kerwee Feedlot is undergoing expansion from 12,200 head to 20,200 head to accommodate Angus and Wagyu and F1’s demand.