Hicks’ composite genetics is internationally admired | Earth

Commercial client Aaron Salmon, Tokajo Pastoral, with Andrew Hicks, Co-Director of Hicks Beef.

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Hicks Beef puts its customers first, breeding Red, Black Composite and Red Angus bulls that deliver profitable and consistent results for commercial beef producers across Australia.

Tom Hicks and his wife Kate span three properties in the NSW Holbrook area, alongside Tom’s parents Andrew and Ann, with 1,500 compound breeders and Angus Reeds.

Tom Hicks says that raising the right animals is a balancing act.

“Our real goal is to help create a profitable trading system that produces the most beef per hectare. So we really want our cows to be very fertile,” he said.

“We are really important in the delivery process, ease of delivery for the mother, while trying to balance carcass traits like IMF (muscle fat) and EMA (eye muscle area), we put a lot of effort into that,” he said.

The Southern NSW process breeds Australian Compound Beef and Red Angus Bulls with a focus on carcass, weight gain and the maternal traits of the cows. This year’s spring sale will feature over 100 bulls, the largest ever Hicks’ Beef’s offering.

“You show your best animals, and we’re able to evenly customize your spring and fall bulls,” Tom said. “It’s not like one sale is better than the other. We try to keep them very evenly.”

In terms of benchmarking, the company uses a comprehensive genetic resource management (TGRM) program to select the best breeding strains after a robust structural evaluation.

Lot 3 in Hicks’ beef assortment selling in the top 0.01 percent for the all-purpose index.

Livestock DNA is also tested for more accurate pregnancy markers for the desired traits.

“The Nebraska-based Center for Animal Meat Research (MARC) conducted trials of 7,000 commercial cattle, with the goal of finding the best way to take advantage of hybrid activity in commercial cattle systems,” said Mr. Hicks.

“They find that the use of composites is the simplest and most effective way to obtain the benefits of covariance and integration reproduction without the trouble of implementing a rotational hybridization system.”

More often than not, their cattle have finished in the top ten in the most amazing feedback trials for beef Teys Australia in their Jindalee Feedlot. Cattle are fed for more than 100 days and are classified according to weight gain and carcass quality.

Mr Hicks attributes their success to the use of Australian beef compounds that combine desirable traits of British and European breeds to create an animal that can gain weight without sacrificing carcass quality or maternal production.

“Because of our breeding programme, we are able to exploit a wide range of genes from bloodlines not just across Australia, but all over the world,” he said.

“But we make impressive gains at home, which is why we chose to use our bulls with our breeders as well as with elite trustees from around the world.”

Despite their continued success, Hicks still made tough marks. Every cow must have a calf every year or else it will be taken out of the herd. They also need calves without assistance, joining during two cycles, remaining structurally sound, and handling above average commercial stocking rates. They also use international benchmarking standards to ensure the livestock they produce consistently perform.

Some of Aaron Salmons cross first the compound cows, with second crosses at the foot.

“We are part of International Genetic Solutions or IGS which is the largest database of red meat in the world,” Tom said. “There are 20 million records in this database and within that our average sales are in the top 10 percent.”

International comparison means that bulls are in great demand. They were then sold and trucked to tropical savannahs in Queensland, to temperate pastures in southern Tasmania and everywhere in between.

“A lot of our customers rely on data. They’ve seen that every other meat industry in the world includes companies or spreads across some description to increase profitability. And they see us as a simple and easy way to add a hybrid business to their business,” said Mr. Hicks.

And while they strive for consistency, there are also buyers who target certain attributes. Hicks says the company’s diverse clients mean they work closely with the people they sell to.

“Because we are perennial breeders, we are willing and able to dedicate something to a specific area as well,” he said.

“We are able to make customer specific crosses and breed them to exact specifications.”

Some of the results they have achieved for their clients are increased fertility in cows, heavier calves, more calves on the ground and improved reactions to the carcass.

Aaron Salmon of Tokago Pastoral introduced compound hicks breeds to their herd in southeastern New South Wales.

“I found that their cattle had quite a few extra hits,” Mr. Salmon said.

“We recorded a real increase in fertility and pregnancy rates with my first cross-bred calves, which were just born. Not only did they manage to produce calves well on their own, but when they joined in last year, the compound calves were 15kg heavier on average. From Angus calves.

The 2022 Thor Hicks Sale will take place in the spring on Wednesday, September 7, 2022.