Information, Networking and Innovation on Offer at SMARTBEEF 2017

October 11, 2017 9:42 am

Preparations are well advanced and excitement building for SMARTBEEF 2017 to be presented by the Australian Lot Feeders’ Association (ALFA) in Armidale just next month.

An exceptional line up of speakers will be anchored by keynote Carolyn Miller, Managing Director of The Honeycomb Effect who will apply her knowledge and experience to the marketing and branding of beef. Carolyn is well recognised as a thought leader in advertising and is known for her role as a panellist on the ABC’s Gruen Planet and Gruen Transfer.

ALFA President Tess Herbert said, “We are extremely pleased with the range of topics and high calibre speakers that we have assembled for SMARTBEEF 2017.  The focus is on being SMART – whether that be in production or business essentials, using data, developing global and domestic market relationships or applying research.”

Participants will also hear from a range of excellent speakers including:

  • Don Mackay, Red Meat Advisory Council – Australia’s shift from being a commodity trader to one built on brands to meet the needs of the global consumer.
  • John Langbridge, Teys Australia – Carcase value discovery and the role that DEXA plays.
  • David Hill, Cattle Council of Australia – A comparison of feedback systems currently used in the industry, how they are put into practice and what will be available in the future.
  • Steve Blake, GrainCorp Liquid Feeds – Balancing the nutrient requirements of livestock with pasture quality – benefits of an integrated supply chain.
  • Rob Banks, Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit, UNE – Designing the perfect feeder steer with genetics.
  • Sean Starling, Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) – Objective measurements and future R&D concepts.
  • Marc Greening, Injemira Beef Genetics Case Study – Feedback systems to assist in making smart genetic and business decisions and how they make greater returns.

“All the speakers on the program have a focus on hands-on application of their topic; this conference is all about giving participants knowledge, information and connections that they can use as soon as they get back to the paddock or the yards,” said Ms Herbert.

The highly anticipated and prestigious industry awards will also be presented during the conference program, including the Young Lot Feeder Award, The Excellence in Feedlot Education Medal, and the Communicate Your Research Competition.

SMARTBEEF delegates will spend the third day of the conference in the paddock at Sundown Pastoral Company where they will see some of the latest technology and ideas in beef production in operation.

The tour will include four ‘stations’ which will each have their own particular focus:

  • Pasture Technology – quantitative mapping of pasture biomass using satellite imagery and optical sensors; Derive Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) to model and predict pasture availability and growth rate; and guides for on-farm management decisions of pasture utilisation by grower cattle.
  • Animal Technology – wearable technology on livestock for tracking and behaviour classification; opportunities to combine with other technologies such as walk-over weighing; capability to add individual objective metrics to animal health, welfare and production.
  • Insights into Sundown Pastoral Company management of paddock rotation, feeder movement and transfers; animal treatments, health protocols and backgrounding; and bloat management.
  • Supplementary Feeding including practical insights from the previous day’s presentation – balancing the nutrient requirements of livestock with pasture quality.

Coopers Animal Health will also provide a pre-vaccination information session outlining the benefits and importance of pre-vaccinating feedlot cattle against BRD.

As delegates move through the tour ‘stations’ they will have the opportunity to discuss various topics with Sundown Pastoral staff and presenters. They will also be hosted for a delicious lunch, naturally featuring beef, at the Sundown homestead.

This event will appeal to anyone with a stake in the beef industry including grass fed beef producers and breeders, feedlot operators, meat processors, transport operators, feed and nutrient suppliers, students, retailers and animal health suppliers.

SMARTBEEF 2017 will be held at the University of New England (UNE), Armidale, 1 – 3 November 2017.

Visit our website for more details or to register your interest at or email for further information.