Beef farmers will now be able to market their cattle as ‘Grain Fed Finished’ after feeding them grain for 35 days before sale or export and will be able to ask a premium for these animals.
Previously, only two standards existed: ‘Grain Fed’ and ‘Grain Fed Young Beef’. ‘Grain fed’ required the cattle to be fed on grain for 80 of the past 100 days while ‘Grain Fed Young Beef’ required grain to be fed 50 of the past 60 days for females and 70 days for males.
“This new ‘Grain Fed Finished’ standard means farmers can feed the cattle grain for 35 days and reap the benefits of selling as ‘Grain Fed Finished’,” said Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, David Littleproud.
“The science says 35 days on grain produces the fat colour attribute associated with grain-fed beef. Thirty-five days on one property means cattle are Meat Standards Australia accredited, too.
“The standard requires the cattle be fed on a specified high energy grain diet. As Australians, we refuse to compromise on quality,” said David. The standard is operational now, having been signed into regulation.
• The new ‘Grain Fed Finished’ standard, or trade description, will apply both domestically and overseas.
• Grain Fed (GF) cattle must have been in a feedlot for not less than 100 days and for not less than 80 days of that, on a nutritionally balance ration of a recognised high energy feed of which grain is the highest single component.
• Grain Fed Young Beef (GFYB) cattle must have been in a feedlot for not less than 70 days (females for not less than 60 days) and for not less than 50 days of that, on a nutritionally balance ration of a recognised high energy feed of which grain is the highest single component.