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Best times for beef 'to come', says stock agent

Brad Mulvahill, from TopX, says it is a positive time all round for the cattle industry.
Brad Mulvahill, from TopX, says it is a positive time all round for the cattle industry. Amber Hooker

CATTLE prices are at a record high and local stock agent Brad Mulvahill says the best is yet to come.

Brad, who took over R F Duncan & Co last year, now runs his own business under the TopX agency banner out at Gracemere.

With 10 years of experience in Gracemere alone, Brad said he had never seen the industry so buoyant and positive.

"Everybody you talk to can't believe how things are going, they have to pinch themselves,” he said. "I've been in Rockhampton here for 10 years and in the 10 years I've been here I've never seen it grow and be as strong.

"We've got to hope that keeps going.”

Brad explained there were a lot of factors contributing to the current market, with supply and demand being a major influence.

The season also plays a part in how the cattle markets pan out and, with a lot of Queensland experiencing great seasons for this time of the year, it means a boost to the industry as a whole.

Combine good seasons with strong supply and demand, as well as Australia's competitive meat prices on the world market, and you have a positive outcome when it comes to prices.

"We were under the odds a long time ago so the averages here have probably gone up 60% than what they were a couple of years ago,” Brad said.

"Every week we seem to be getting better. I don't think we've hit our peak yet, just my gut feeling.”

Brad said once some really widespread rain was seen, there would be an even bigger boost within the industry.

"We're only coming into summer so the season is on everybody's side,” he said.

"So if we have a relatively average season with the rain we've had already, it will be a bumper summer.”

"I think the next 12 months are going to be strong.”

Brad noticed things really take a turn for the better for local graziers and producers since the live export ban had been lifted.

"Things have just turned around and gone forward since then, so from where we were then to where we are now it's phenomenal.”

"The domestic market's so strong. What's driving it right now is the season and the supply and demand - and the demand is high.”

The willingness for people wanting to trade cattle at the moment was phenomenal because the money was good, Brad explained.

"I have more calls every day wanting to buy cattle then I can get to sell cattle, where at times it's been the other way around.

"That's what is holding it back from going even further is the numbers are starting to slow up a bit.

"The Friday sale numbers (at Gracemere) have been great and numbers are coming through the sale yards because the market is so strong. It's the best place to sell them.”

Brad said after quite a few years of farmers and producers doing it tough, it was nice to see them making a bit of money.

"From restockers to strong markets and feedlots, just all around the industry is in a great position.”

"The whole industry is positive. I'm not sure if processors are feeling the same joy. But as a whole people are doing a lot of catching up.”

From here on, Brad said he would like to see some stability in the industry.

"It's been fairly good but I'd like to see the stability stay there.

"I think the industry can handle it, it's where we should be on the world stage and that's what we've got to look at, we're not competing with the world market.

"I think we're going to see some big big inroads into China. Indonesia might be a bit on the back burner. They've been great supporters but I think the more affluent Asian countries are going to be taking up a big chunk of our industry.”

Topics:  cattle prices gracemere


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