Harvey Beef net profit down

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Sean SmithCountryman
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Andrew Forrest at Harvey Beef, where net profit plunged from $3.1 million to just $195,016.
Camera IconAndrew Forrest at Harvey Beef, where net profit plunged from $3.1 million to just $195,016. Credit: Ian Munro

Record cattle prices appear to have taken their toll on Andrew Forrest’s Harvey Beef business, despite a big jump in sales.

Bolstered by significant investment from Mr Forrest’s family company, Harvey Beef’s sales leapt 24 per cent to $265.5 million in the year to June 30, according to filings by its parent, Harvey Industries Group.

Net profit, however, plunged from $3.1 million to $195,016.

While there was an absence of commentary, Harvey Beef’s cost of sales soared by one-third, presumably under the influence of 20-year high prices for cattle.

At balance date, it was carrying 3003 head of cattle worth $5.6 million, down from 8502 valued at $10.3 million a year ago.

Mr Forrest’s Minderoo has invested tens of millions of dollars in Harvey Beef since buying it in 2014, linking the abattoir with his budding cattle station empire in the State’s north to create an integrated beef supply chain to feed domestic and export markets.

Having previously focused solely on the bulk export market, Harvey Beef has since exported its first shipments of branded shelf-ready sliced beef and lamb packs for sale in Chinese stores and other high-end Asian supermarkets.

In a little more than two years, Minderoo has gone from owning one station to holding five, becoming the biggest player in the WA beef industry.

Most of its investment in Harvey Beef has gone into new freezer stores and a retail-ready plant, helping ensure a consistent 12-month supply of cattle for its premium brand.

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