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Galati family take the ribbon

South West-bred beef cattle took a share in top honours at the triennial national carcase competition as part of Beef Australia held in Queensland last month.

The Galati family, who run a licensed feedlot at Brunswick, had the highest scoring pen of three with their medium trade chiller steers or heifers (class four — grain fed).

They were part of a strong contingent of WA entries competing in the ANZ National Beef Carcase Competition, judged at participating meat processing plants throughout Australia with winners announced at Beef Australia in Rockhampton on May 4.

Rodney Galati, who runs the family’s feedlot with his father John, said it was their first overall win in the national competition.

In the past, they also took out the inaugural Harvey Beef Gate 2 Plate Challenge overall prize in 2015, and were runner-ups in 2020.

Plans to make good use of their successes are being considered with the prospects of marketing a beef brand of their own in the near future.

“As the whole paddock-to-plate theme seems more and more the way things are going — it’s nice to have a bit of a story to get started if that’s the direction we take,” Mr Galati said.

“The win is a credit to our breeding but also to the quality grain mix we purchase from Produce Link at Australind.

“It’s a whole-grain ration and comprises some of WA’s finest cereals.”

Mr Galati contributed all of WA’s dominating entries to the State’s well-bred cattle and best performance from quality grass and grain-feeding programs.

“We were lucky that our winning pen of Angus cross Limousin took out the overall prize — a credit to Dad’s eye for cattle and help with team selection,” he said.

“Since then, we’ve had calls for extra beef orders which is a compliment but it’s hard enough keeping up with our market supplies.”

The Galati family also entered three teams in the heavyweight grain-fed class, placing third, sixth and ninth.

Their commercial feedlot success has been directed at introducing Wagyu bulls to the mix in the last five years.

“We select Wagyu bulls specifically bred for first-cross production over our Angus heifers from December onwards,” Mr Galati said.

“They are extremely fertile though I still can’t get used to their uncommon physique next to our European blood cattle.

“The highly valued F1 Wagyu calves are weaned a couple of months later than traditional types as their growth rates are slower.”

Mr Galati said the F1 calves were fed for approximately 150 days before being on-sold to TW Pearson’s Lake Preston feedlot.

“The balance of our herd is mated late April to early May with all second calver cows mated to Limousin bulls before both Limousin and Charolais bulls are used over third and later calvers,” he said.

Mr Galati said the remaining calves from their 500-head European and cross Angus breeding program were grain-fed and marketed locally.

“We supply 230-260kg carcases to V&V Walsh all year round and British cross European cattle seem to suit the job perfectly,” he said.

“The next tier calves go to Woolworths, with heavy grid cattle going to Ryan’s Quality Meats and live export.

“We can’t produce the amount that we supply, about 3000 head annually, so we try to buy in similar cattle to what we breed to maintain consistency in the feedlot.”

The Galatis source their weaners from various outlets including privately, Boyanup and Mt Barker saleyards and AuctionsPlus with the majority from Boyanup.

Mr Galati said there was an abundance of latest technology on show at Beef Australia and he was looking forward to 2024.

“I was drawn particularly to the ones that involved taking cattle management, recording and costings to a higher and more accurate level,” he said.

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