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Growing Beef from Dairy Producer Demonstration Sites

05 December 2023


Project Summary

The Growing Beef from Dairy Project will upskill and support dairy and beef farmers to improve welfare and meat quality outcomes for surplus dairy calves. 

The project will develop a bespoke extension and adoption package to assist producers to make better informed decisions on the management of surplus calves with a focus on the target market for the calves.

The project supports producers’ decision making around surplus dairy calves through strategies to meet market specifications more efficiently.

The Growing Beef from Dairy Project is jointly funded by Meat & Livestock Australia and Dairy Australia and delivered by AgSTAR Projects.

Producer Demonstration Sites (PDS) are being run as part of the Growing Beef from Dairy Project. Three demonstration sites look at different market pathways for surplus calves with data collected by producers involved over the two years. The producers share their experiences and are supported by the others in the group as well as industry experts and supply chain participants. The pilot PDS is based on the successful MLA PDS program.

PDS Members

  • Facilitator – Kristen Davis, Regional Extension Officer, GippsDairy, supported by Callen Thompson, AgSTAR Projects
  • 10 dairy farmers
  • Genetics companies
  • Advisor/consultants
  • Vets
  • Greenham
  • Elite Dairy Beef

PDS Sites

Site 1: Benefits of good calf management in first 10 days

Site 1 is selling calves at 10 days’ old to commercial calf rearers with an existing supply chain. Carefully managed treatment calves will be traced and compared with average calves entering the supply chain.

Site 2: Beef sire breed comparison

Different beef breeds will be compared as terminal sires. The dairy producer at this site uses

Angus, Hereford and Fleckvieh bulls. The differences in growth and meat quality will be compared.

Site 3: Grow out on-farm

Economic and production data will be collected on dairy x wagyu cattle that have been supplied for a premium beef brand for several years on pasture and with supplementary feeding.

Get involved

If you would like to be involved in the project, review content or find out more, please contact:

Callen Thompson, AgSTAR Projects, M 0428 125 906, E

To follow this project, subscribe to the Growing Beef from Diary project newsletter or visit Growing Beef from Dairy