Last week, we left off after the weaning process. At this point, our cattle have graduated their education, arrived at Kimberley, and are ready to begin their adult life.
Upon arrival at Kimberley, they will spend 6-12 months in the paddock growing with their mates. It’s mostly eating grass, growing, cruising around the paddock and hanging out with mates – a hard life! We call this process backgrounding. After they have grown, they begin to periodically come through the yards, where the lead of the mob is selected for entry into the feedlot.
Feedlot inductions occur every 2-4 weeks, and involve the steer or heifer receiving a management tag and vaccinations. The management tag displays the week number they were inducted and an individual number for that steer. For example, the 42nd steer we inducted in the 36th week of the year will have a tag that reads 36-42, as the young gentleman on the left is displaying below.
The vaccinations they receive are booster shots to the immunisations the animal has received as a calf, and work to prevent any kind of disease or illness they could encounter and manage any parasites they may come in contact with.
Our cattle spend between 70 and 200 days on a grain-feeding program, depending on which brand they are destined for. Early maturing cattle take the express route for our 70-day ‘Sondella’ brand. The most popular program is our 110-day program, which brings you our renowned Kimberley Red and its European equivalent Angus Pastoral Co. Our 200-day grain fed cattle are handpicked by Blair for their ‘mossy’ coat and temperament. The ‘mossy’ coat is indicative of fine silky hair, which has been proven to be consistent with a finer texture within the meat. They then feed on a longer, slower feeding program, with only 11% grain for the first 100 days, in order to produce the highest quality beef we can offer, in our Oino-Gustus brand.
Join us again next week for the completion of this journey!