NEVER EVER SUPPLIERS: Ian and Devan Robertson, Wave Hills, Tahara, Victoria, have been supplying cattle to Greenham's NEVER EVER program for about a year.

NEVER EVER SUPPLIERS: Ian and Devan Robertson, Wave Hills, Tahara, Victoria, have been supplying cattle to Greenham's NEVER EVER program for about a year.

Grass-fed beef in focus for Greenham

Grass-fed beef in focus for Greenham

Livestock Leaders
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Advertiser content: Greenham is meeting demand for humane, grass-fed beef with its NEVER EVER program.

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This is advertiser content for Greenham.

BEEF producers in southern states are making the most of market opportunities, with increased interest in the Greenham NEVER EVER Beef Program over the past five years.

The premium program was established in 2012 to source, certify and promote premium quality natural grass-fed beef from breeders and finishers across southern Australia, and it's grown to include more than 2500 producers.

The program proudly sources beef that is 100 per cent grass-fed, with no added hormones, no antibiotics, lifetime traceability, free range (never confined to a feedlot), free from GMOs (genetically modified organisms), Meat Standards Australia (MSA) certified.

With animal welfare concerns now at the forefront of customer buying preferences, the NEVER EVER Beef Program has expanded to incorporate the certified humane accreditation, which is a program committed to improving the lives of farm animals in food production from birth to slaughter, and assures consumers that animals are raised in accordance with high animal welfare standards.

Under the grass-fed program, finished cattle receive competitive and consistent pricing 52 weeks a year with alternate season requirements from the northern and southern hemisphere customers providing year-round demand.

The program is underpinned by MSA grading and has a wide grid from 220 kilograms to 440kg dressed weight, and carcases recognised for their higher eating quality according to MSA indexing can achieve additional premiums.

We see a big future in our NEVER EVER Beef Program. It gives producers the market to sell their superior southern Australian beef to some of the best restaurants and largest natural retailers and distributors throughout the world. - Greenham managing director Peter Greenham Jnr

Good quality NEVER EVER accredited cows also attract strong premiums, and beef from those cows are eligible for the Vintage Beef Co brand.

"We see a big future in our NEVER EVER Beef Program. It gives producers the market to sell their superior southern Australian beef to some of the best restaurants and largest natural retailers and distributors throughout the world," Greenham managing director Peter Greenham Jnr said.

"Historically, price, taste and convenience have been principal drivers of purchase behavior but now consumers are looking beyond these, and focusing on product attributes such as production methods, provenance, animal welfare, environmental impacts and overall sustainability. In particular we have seen in mature markets like the USA - and more recently here in Australia - animal welfare concerns are now at the forefront.

"Unfortunately, we're seeing some headwinds to the beef industry in terms of animal rights groups being more vocal, non-meat alternatives with massive financial backers potentially taking market share and consumers wanting more from the meat they buy but buying less of it. For these reasons, as a processor, we are trying to do all we can to create robust supply chain programs and beef brands that tick as many boxes as possible."

Ian and Devan Robertson have been supplying cattle to the NEVER EVER program for about a year.

The Robertsons run about 800 Te Mania-blood Angus breeders at Wave Hills, Tahara, supplying cull heifers and older cows to the Greenham program. The cattle are run on improved pastures including ryegrass, phalaris and clovers.

"Typically we're sending them the unproductive cows that are preg tested empty, and the cull heifers that don't make the specifications for the heifer export market," Devan Robertson said.

"We're already members of several other quality assurance programs including PCAS (Pasturefed Cattle Assurance System) and EU (European Union), and there are slight differences, but this is one of the less onerous programs."

This is advertiser content for Greenham.

The story Grass-fed beef in focus for Greenham first appeared on Queensland Country Life.

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