The Notmans sign off with final weaners sold

The Notmans sign off with final weaners sold


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Geoff and Di Notman have bred Hereford cattle to target the Western District weaner sales for 30 years, but that is now coming to an end.

Geoff and Di Notman have bred Hereford cattle to target the Western District weaner sales for 30 years, but that’s now come to an end.

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They will sell a small number of heifer weaners today (Thursday) and last week sold their last line of steer weaners, after selling the Mt Widderin property at Skipton in early November.

The farm was on the market for 12 months before being purchased by their neighbour.

With the property sold, the couple have been very busy selling their wool and livestock.

The PTIC breeding females and the best of the heifer weaners were sold on AuctionsPlus, as were their stud sheep.

Mr Notman said he was particularly pleased wool producers purchased their flock sheep to breed them on.

Last week, their 105 steers averaged 361.7kg and made $1377.47/head.

“We’re very happy and grateful to be able to disperse our herd in a buoyant time,” Mr Notman said.

“We can reflect on times when cattle were making $1.80 or $1.90/kg year after year and there wasn’t much profit in rearing calves, but today producers are getting rewarded for their efforts.”

“With our only son Anthony in a non-farming career, we’ve decided to enjoy life after farming,” Geoff Notman said, pictured with wife Di.

“With our only son Anthony in a non-farming career, we’ve decided to enjoy life after farming,” Geoff Notman said, pictured with wife Di.

Their steers won best presented pen at the Elders and Landmark Hamilton Hereford weaner sale – making it seven times in the past nine years. They’ve also topped the sale six times.

They targeted the Mortlake sale, and when it stopped, moved to Hamilton.

They said had mixed feelings about selling their final draft.

“We’re sad but very grateful,” Mrs Notman said. "And we’ve made a lot of good friends with both clients and agents. And we’ve always enjoyed working with cattle.”

Mr Notman said one of the best changes they’d seen while involved in the industry was saleyards such at Hamilton provide more information to potential buyers, including live weights. He also prefers sales be conducted in dollars a kilogram, over dollars a head.

He said the genetic gain in their herd and the industry had been “remarkable”,

“It’s important because we’re competing in a world-wide market of proteins, so red meat has to compete with other foodstuffs.”

But they have been disappointed to see the number of Herefords in the Western District decrease.

“As a passionate Hereford believer, I find it amazing that so many people think they have to change to Angus because I still believe Herefords are superior in terms of feed conversion, temperament and doing ability compared to the Angus.”

The Notmans will move near Ballarat, where they’ll have a few acres on which to keep a mare or two. 

Their move out of Skipton marks an end of an era for the family – Mr Notmas in the fourth generation farmer and the family has been at Skipton since the 1880s.

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