Horsham beef producer has a long drive

A Horsham cattle producer finds the best prices at the end of a long drive


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Cropping and cattle production the right mix for one Horsham producer.

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LONG DRIVE: Horsham beef producer Bruce McIntosh opts to take the long drive from the Wimmera, to Pakenham, as he says he gets better prices there.

LONG DRIVE: Horsham beef producer Bruce McIntosh opts to take the long drive from the Wimmera, to Pakenham, as he says he gets better prices there.

Agents at Pakenham's Victorian Livestock Exchange are used to yarding cattle from Gippsland, the Yarra Valley and Phillip Island.

But one regular vendor brings his stock more than 350 kilometres to Pakenham, all the way from Horsham.

Bruce McIntosh, who runs a rural building design and construction factory in Horsham, turns off Angus cattle and has a cropping operation at two properties to the south of the city.

"The cropping and the grazing work together, you use the crop to improve the grazing side of things," Mr McIntosh said.

He runs 280 cows and calves on 400 hectares, in the Brimpaen area, and said he brought stock to Pakenham two or three times a year.

Last week he presented more than 230 head of steers and heifers.

Brimpaen had traditionally been wetter than the rest of the region, so was more conducive to supporting cattle production.

"I do my cropping 10 kilometres south of Horsham, while the cows are at Brimpaen; it's a wetter area and I just thought cattle would suit better than having sheep," he said.

The cattle had been supplementary fed since early December, after a dry year.

He said he now planned to sow oats and balansa clover for feed, while he had also been putting in beans, barley and oats at his McKenzie Creek block.

Mr McIntosh said he used Mandayen LimFlex bulls, from Damian Gommers, Bordertown, SA, over Angus females, purchased at Pakenham.

"The bulls have a bit more bone structure from the Limousin and have the condition of the Angus, so you get a bit more weight and a bigger frame," he said.

He said he preferred to bypass other markets, as the prices were better at Pakenham.

"It's nothing to have 10 buyers getting on them, and often they are standing there, waiting for your cattle to be sold," he said.

He also praised Alex Scott & Staff agent David Setches, who he said was another reason why he came to Pakenham.

*Read the full Pakenham sale report on page 41

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