Thursday, 03 July 2014 16:08

Herefords claiming market share

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HEREFORD BREEDERS are enjoying a strong sale season and have reclaimed some market share against other beef breeds says PGG Wrightson national genetics manager Bruce Orr.

Orr who travels the country attending sales for all breeds has noticed commercial farmers are moving back to using registered Hereford bulls.
"Last year we started to see, and this year it has been confirmed, that some commercial buyers who have been buying black bulls have actually switched to buying Herefords."

That means registered Hereford breeders have had similar, if not better clearances and in a number of cases, better averages than other breeds.
Orr said last week he had a client purchase 11 Hereford bulls and that client planned to purchase more registered Herefords in coming weeks.

Market prices have been strong with a lift in clearance rates and the average price also improving at the better sales.

"Generally speaking Hereford breeders have had a strong season, it's been a very good season" says Orr. "There have been clearances in most cases and overall it's been very pleasing for Herefords."
He felt there were a couple of drivers behind the swing back to Herefords.

He cites the production and performance gains of about 10% improvement that farmers can cash in on from hybrid vigour when using a registered Hereford bull over black cows.
"The resulting progeny are always keenly sought after," says Orr.

Orr also held the personal opinion that the Hereford breed had successfully encompassed increases in performance data but not at the expense of the cattle themselves.
Hereford bull, Okawa Major 2008 bred by David and Rosemary Morrow at Mt Somers fetched $55,000 selling to Kokonga Herefords near Tuakau. This is to date the top price across all breeds this sale season. The Morrows sold another bull for $44,000 to Orari Gorge Herefords. The Morrows average price was $8054.

Other highlights include: Maungahina Herefords, Masterton with a top price of $20,000 and average of $6446; Koanui Polled Herefords, Havelock North enjoyed a top price of $16,000 and average $6650; Waikaka Herefords, Gore with a top price of $15,000 and average of $4894; Monymusk Herefords, Te Anau with a top price of $11,500 and average of $7068; Matariki Herefords, Kaikoura with a top price of $11,000 and average of $7097. Wilencote Herefords, Gisborne averaged $6014 and Mokairau Herefords, Gisborne averaged $6562.

This upwards trend continues from the exceptionally strong national show and sale for NZ Herefords at AgInnovation where the breed took out Champion of Champions honours and top price honours for all breeds at $40,000 paid for Hereford sire Okahu Sonny Bill.

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