Commercial Animal Production
Over the past 6 years the Hawkesbury Farm has undertaken a number of activities to improve its commercial viability.
In the past the farm concentrated on breeding a small herd of Hereford cattle for the beef market. Today, the farm has expanded its program to include commercial grade Angus and mixed breeds (i.e. Hereford crossed Simmental/Angus/Limousin and Angus crossed Simmental/Limousin) to produce a superior product. This improvement has been recognised and awarded at a number of agricultural shows, including the 2019 Royal Easter Show.
The farm is also looking to the future with a move into the stud breeding market. Our small herds of Angus and Limousin have been selected based on their genetics which is being enhanced with genetic material imported from both Canada and the USA, as well as the best in Australia. Artificial insemination and embryo transplanting are key to developing the genetic profile of the stud animals and their estimated breeding value.
Our sheep breeding program has moved away from the Merino cross of the past, with their high wool production but lower meat value. Instead, Black Faced Suffolk ewes and rams have taken their place. The shift towards this breed allows the farm to concentrate on producing prime lambs for the domestic market.
For all of these activities to be a success, a great deal of effort has been placed on our cropping enterprise. These include:
- Soil remediation through the use of organic fertilisers;
- Matching plant species not only for our particular needs but that grow best in the Hawkesbury region;
- Using sustainable practises such as irrigation with recycled water and
- Ongoing consultation with industry agronomists.