There is a strong market for young bull beef
in Italy, for both the retail and foodservice markets.
Scheme developers, The Welsh Meat Company and Wynnstay Group plc are delighted with the response to the project which they claim offers a profitable way forward for farming in Wales and an opportunity to create new jobs in a beleaguered industry.
The home farm originally had a dairy herd but the Davies' income now comes from a mixed flock of around 1,500 breeding ewes, 40 suckler cows with the progeny being taken forward to finishing weights, some as bull beef
, and further batches of store cattle and lambs are bought in to be fattened.
Mr Chesney runs 120 continental suckler cows over 61ha producing suckled calves which are reared as bull beef
and sold fat to ABP or sold as bulling heifers.
Runner-up was Ceredigion producer GW Watkin, of Henllys, Dolybont, Borth, who runs a dairy, bull beef
and arable farm on 332 acres, with a further 350 acres of hill land for 950 ewes.
Under the new Bull Beef
scheme, farmers wilt enter a contract with the Welsh Meat Company to rear beef for processing.
The Blade project appears to be a much more comprehensive version of the dairy bull beef
schemes launched, not in all cases successfully, a couple of years ago when the Calf Processing Aid Scheme ended.
Another demo farmer, James Cowan from Llandysul, reckoned to have saved PS21,480 by reducing bull beef
finishing costs through better genetics.
There are 16 men employed fulltime in the family business, which comprises two dairy herds with a total of 620 milkers producing four million litres per year, some 300 dairy followers, 450 beef cattle (of which 150 are fattened as bull beef
at 14-15 months) and around 2,500 store lambs which are bought in for finishing each year.
Almost certainly reflecting the extent to which higher feed prices have affected pure-bred bull beef
viability, the relative figures suggest more than 100,000 dairy bull calves may have been lost to the beef industry last year.
THE National Beef Association claims unrealistically low wholesale and retail mince values are killing off Holstein bull beef
But that's the way we farm already, and yet we're being hit," complained the NFU adviser, pointing out that British beef production, along with the Irish and some of the French, would be penalised because it was very slightly outside the extensification criteria deemed acceptable -- yet most excess supply pressure was from the far more intensive continental dairy bull beef
Autumn-born female calves are sold at 12-14 months and the males are fattened as bull beef
When the children saw the bull beef
they were told exactly what their final destination would be - burgers and ready-made lasagne - and only one out of 90 showed signs of being a vegan.
LOWER rearing calf prices, cheaper cereals, and an improving market for slaughter cattle, should be making grain-fed, Holstein bull beef
and rose veal more attractive to specialist finishers, industry experts have said.