Gelbvieh make big point
A family of Gelbvieh cattle producers from Narrikup took the overall win in the seventh annual Harvey Beef Gate 2 Plate Challenge at a gala event in Albany on Friday.
John Pugh and daughters Alexandra Pugh Riggall and Clare King were pleasantly surprised when their Summit Gelbvieh stud was announced the team with the most points, from 62 total entries.
The trio were awarded the prestigious trophy at a presentation at Albany’s Centennial Function Centre, in front of 185 peers and industry figureheads.
The Pugh family, who entered a team (one heifer and two steers) of pure Gelbvieh cattle and a team of Gelbvieh cross British breed cattle, scored 187.295 points out of a possible 375 for the latter team.
The heifer component of their winning team ranked first overall on 75.206 points — the highest of all steers and heifers in the competition.
The challenge allocates points based on factors that are measurable and influence profitability at each stage of the supply chain and eating quality.
The pure Gelbvieh team was sired by Summit Goldfinger and placed first in the processor section, second in the feedlot section, and seventh in the Meat Standards Australia grading section.
It was a milestone and a top accolade for the Pughs after introducing Gelbviehs to their cattle production in the 1970s, establishing the stud in 1995.
Mr Pugh said the challenge was a good way to learn more about cattle performance. He said the pure Gelbvieh team was sired by one of his favourite bulls.
“Although he has a tendency to throw horned cattle, as with the two steers in our team, appearances aren’t everything,” Mr Pugh joked.
“Winning this year’s Gate 2 Plate Challenge was a recognition that Gelbviehs were up there in feedlot performance.
“We have been selecting Gelbvieh cattle from North America bloodlines to perform in the Australian environment with the ability to put down fat.”
The Pughs’ win came after they had participated in the challenge since its inception in 2015.
It was the first time a pure Gelbvieh team had won the overall prize.
The runner-up award was won by the Metcalfe family, of Koojan Hills Angus stud, in Manypeaks, who entered a pure Angus team that scored 180.973 points.
The Angus team was sired by Koojan Hills L188 and placed second in the processor section, third in the feedlot section, and 19th in the MSA grading section.
A new award to recognise the highest-performing Challenge competitor from 2015-2020 was won by Limousin breeders Jenny and Murray Fouracres, of Manjimup.
“Limousin have the best muscle, so we give ourselves good chances of winning,” Mrs Fouracres said.
WA College of Agriculture — Harvey was a dual winner, claiming victory as the most improved team and the highest-performing college or school.
Harvest Road chief executive Paul Slaughter sent his congratulations to the Pugh family for their overall win.
“Harvey Beef is pleased to support this important event which provides cattle producers with useful data to benchmark themselves against their peers,” he said.
“Cattle producers are at the heart of our business, and their hard work and commitment ensures we can put WA beef on plates around the world.
“I would also like to pay tribute to the committee for their dedication to the competition.
“It is testament to their efforts that Gate 2 Plate continues to go from strength to strength and is held in such high regard by producers across WA.”
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