Sam's Paddock butchery

Beef Week - Kenny's Creek Angus open day is Tuesday 26th July 2016

Kenny's Creek Angus 2016 Bull Sale

Having written this introductory comment for over 25 years I can't  recall a set of market and climate conditions that have been more favourable to the breeding of high quality Angus cattle.

The markets for both live Angus cattle and high quality Angus meat are running at levels not seen before.  Demand for Angus heifers extends from Russia, Turkey, Vietnam, Mexico, and of course China.  This comes at a time when the Australian herd is in a rebuilding phase on the back of an extended drought period in Eastern Australia.  The fortunes of cattle producers and red meat processors have reversed and processors are now struggling to accommodate their cost of raw materials and at the same time meeting tougher export markets. This situation is neither sustainable nor healthy for our industry and better long term market processes must be thought through to avoid the winner/loser syndrome we are stuck in.

The international settings are challenging with Australian finished steer prices, compared to their US counterparts, performing at levels not previously seen.  Traditionally the long term sees the US price as the more expensive and the discount between the two is traditionally around 40% but recently it is only 12% and in the last weeks has closed off completely.  In some instances Australian steer prices have exceeded the US price of finished steers.  This travels very much against a long trend and comes at a time when US demand for beef is showing some softness in the futures market, on the back of price competition from poultry and pork.  This would indicate that we are headed for a correction of sorts.  Whilst I suspect we are close to the top, Australia in the short and medium term will be driven more by local supply and seasonal issues than by international markets.  This is in direct contrast to the situation a little earlier.

We are seeing some capacity constraints with regards to pricing in the Chinese market which is proving more challenging, with a currently overstocked position on products that have not yet been sold in the local market.  Sam Burton Taylor observes in our own Chinese marketing that there is greater consumer sensitivity to pricing change, which has been severely impacted by competition from Brazil and seemingly unsustainably high levels of the Australian dollar.

Interestingly Brazil will end the year with the second sharpest decline in its per capita income in 116 years with GDP decreasing 3.5% this year alone.  The effect of this has been to embolden their export efforts into a number of our established markets and put negative price pressure into the system.

All of these factors combine with strong aggregate demand from both export and domestic to indicate that the market, whilst it may have peaked, is entering a period of some price equilibrium rather than experiencing the dramatic rises of the recent past.

Turning to the bulls on offer in this Spring 2016 sale.

I could not be more pleased with the draft of bulls being put before you.  They exhibit a conformity in type that we have been striving for, for many years.  Thickness across the loin, strong topline with smooth shoulders, strong muscle profile, width from the rear and placed on a sound "chassis" of strong legs and feet.  There is a consistency across the draft in all of these features.

These eye pleasing characteristics are contained in an EBV package which has now given us above breed performance in all the key traits that we have focused on, namely: calving ease, eye muscle area, marbling and growth.



Calving Ease

Gest length

BW kg

200 day

400 day

600 day

Mature cow




Rib Fat

















Breed Avg















The sale features a number of sires which were identified by Adam Withers, Stud Manager Kenny's Creek Angus, on his trip to the USA to look at potential sires and cow herds.  The sale features Broken Bow, Grade Up, Complement, Mentor as well as Outliner and Docklands.  In addition to these sires the catalogue is well presented with a number of Kenny's Creeks own sires, including KCA Darwin D392, which have performed exceptionally well and blend in impressively with the imported sire lines.

A few stand outs are as follows:

Lot 1 K263 is a very soft, well-muscled Broken Bow son.  This bull is an exceptionally low -0.2 for birth weight with both 200 day and 400 day growth figures over breed average and EMA 7. A truly outstanding spread from birth to 400 days.

Lot 5 K302 is by Outliner, a deep bodied heavily muscled bull, positive calving ease bull, 2.1, below average birth weight and above average 200, 400 and 600 day growth.

Lot 36 L28, a 2015 Autumn drop bull, is a Complement son, positive calving ease low birth weight bull and above average for all growth traits. EMA 7.8, positive rib and rump fat with an IMF% of 2.8.

In all, the sale is offering eleven embryo transfer sons.  These bulls are born July 2015 out of  some of the best cows at Kenny's Creek.  Donor cow D147 has four Broken Bow sons and two Regent sons while the donor cow Z291 has one Harvestor son.

It will be interesting to see how the various Angus sales price themselves this Spring.  I suspect that there are insufficient cows in the market to lead to any silly pricing but competition will be strong for cross purpose bulls that allow both heifer and cow joinings.  A large proportion of our catalogue now allows for bulls to be used for such purpose and this duality has been one of the prime objectives of our breeding policy.

It is worth drawing to your attention that we sell over half our bulls by private treaty in the paddock during the course of the year.  This suits a lot of clients who may find the auction system daunting or fail to achieve their objectives in the more competitive environment.  If after your Spring purchases you find yourself in a position where you would like to supplement your sires please consider this an option as we have a range of bulls from high quality sire lines with full HBR data to specially bred commercial bulls with sire data from an elite cow herd run at Breakfast Creek Station.

As always we remain fascinated with this industry and implore you to provide us with feedback on your purchases.



Nick Burton Taylor                             


July 2016



ABC Podcast Interview with Sam Burton Taylor