FOR specialist Wagyu producer Takao Suzuki its all about the beef.
"We’re all about consistently delivering the very highest quality meat we can for our customers,” Mr Suzuki said. “As the Wagyu breed moves forward in Australia it is very important all producers ensure meat quality is the absolute focus.”
Mr Suzuki has spent the past three decades working with Wagyus in both Japan and in Australia and now owns and operates an integrated breeding and feedlot operation. His highly prized Suzuki Farm Wagyu beef is supplied to high-end Sydney restaurants as well as in Shanghai and Dubai.
The end game is always the consumer.
Key to the operation is an 840ha breeding block at Bathurst where 300 full blood Wagyu cows. Tajima bulls are used over Kedaka influenced females to achieve heavier carcass weight and marbling.
Progeny destined for the under cover Japanese style feedlot are sent to Yamboon Park at six months and fed a pre-mixed ration including cracked barley and corn, wheat straw, lucerne and ryerass hay. Japanese Wagyu feeding techniques are used to ensure optimum performance. The diet also includes the Alltech feed additives Yea Sacc and Actigen, which are specifically used to improve fibre digestion and gut health.
“If the animal has access to the right nutrition from a young age it allows the rumen to develop properly, which ultimately helps maximise the growth rates and develop the marbled beef we strive to produce,” Mr Suzuki said. “Yea Sacc and Actigen are essential because they help ensure the animals reach their genetic potential.”
The feeders are switched from a grower to a finisher ration at 13 months to produce growth rates of 0.9-1kg liveweight/day. At 30 months and weighing about 750kg, they are processed at Northern Coopoerative Meat Company at Casino. The carcases are grading at up to marbling score 9.
Nutrition specialists Toby Doak from Alltech and Dave Starr from Lienert Australia have also played key roles in finetuning the feeding program. Mr Doak said Alltech had been supplying Yea Sacc to well over a 100 Wagyu operations in Japan for more than 20 years.
30 years of Wagyu knowledge
AFTER focusing on beef and dairy production during his studies at university in his native Japan, Takeo Suzuki moved to Australia in 1991 to take up a position with Rangers Valley Feedlot at Glen Innes.
Driven by a passion for producing highly marbled beef, he was soon instrumental in helping develop Rangers Valley’s industry leading Wagyu feedlot program.
“It's always all about the meat, focusing on producing exactly what the customer actually wants,” the globally recognised industry consultant said.
“Of course the cattle and genetics are also critical, but the end game is always the consumer.
“That’s the real success of the Wagyu industry: it’s ability to produce a beef eating experience that just cannot be found anywhere else. That has to be the industry’s focus.”
In addition to his work in Australia, Mr Suzuki has clients in Middle East who has been operating a Wagyu farm under his management.
He also analysed Japanese traditional Wagyu bloodlines to better understand and maximise the performance of the distinctly Japanese breed.
Mr Suzuki is regularly called on to help development individual businesses and to maximise the performance of the distinctly Japanese breed.
Yamboom Park also supplies breeding stock as well as embryos and semen, email: firstname.lastname@example.org