"Based on research done by the
Netherlands Department of Agriculture proving that crossbreeding
with Piedmontese gave the best results of all beef breeds trialled, I
decided to commence breeding Piedmontese in Australia.
In the early '90;s, due to
quarantine restrictions, availability of genetics was limited and
could only be sourced from USA, Canada and Denmark. I managed to
import 30 embryo's from Denmark. Due to ignorance the wrong
recipients were chosen (Freisian heifers) and severe calving
difficulties were experienced.
With the opening of imports from
Italy I have been able to source my genetics from ANABORAPI, the
central bull testing station, and calving difficulties have been a
thing of the past.
The herd now consists of 30
breeders and all have calved without assistance.
They are on improved pasture
year-round, varying from lush when it rains, to dry in drought
conditions. Temperatures range from -3 in winter to +40 in
summer without any great influence on their condition. They
are extremely easy to handle in the paddocks and in the yards.
The cows are excellent mothers
with good milk supply for their calves. Supplementary
"creep-feeding" gives optimum results.
I have commenced selling full
blood steer calves (growing them to 380kg for the butcher trade).
This has been very successful, demand exceeding supply. The
butcher is pleased with the yield (72% to 82% of carcass weight) and
the consumer comes back for more because of the quality of the meat
(no fat, tender and tasty). With crossbred steers similar
results have been achieved with slightly more fat cover.
With the focus on lean meat there
should be a great future for Piedmontese."
Con Van Kretschmar