The digital revolution is here

May 24, 2017 3:33 pm

‘The digital revolution is here and we are living it every day, it will change the way we farm.’

This was the opening line from Drewe Ferguson, from CSIRO on the use of digital technologies in the red meat industry, during his presentation to delegates at the #GrowAngus National Conference last week and highlighted a recurring theme throughout the conference as Angus breeders look to the future.

Technology was highlighted as the biggest game changer in the beef industry with Angus breeders and the Angus breed at the forefront of this revolution, as more than 180 Angus breeders and industry representatives converged on Ballarat in Victoria for the 2017 #GrowAngus National Conference.

Delegates from all over Australia and from the United States of America and New Zealand were treated to a program that boasted an impressive line-up of speakers from a diverse range of backgrounds, with technological advancements and improvements in marketing techniques taking center stage.

Sessions covered topics in the areas of improving communication across the beef supply chain, the next generation of Angus genomic technologies, the evolution of livestock selling systems, marketing Angus in the digital age, digital disruption and the social media evolution and the health benefits of including beef in your diet, to name a few.

In opening the session, Dr Dan Moser, President, Angus Genetics Inc, St Joseph Missouri, paid homage to Angus Australia and its position as an industry leader in the development of genetic technology.

‘I have admired the Australian Angus beef industry from afar and have been watching closely as you developed selection indexes, long before the USA had dollar values’, said Dr Moser.

Dr Moser highlighted that Angus breeders in both the USA and Australia have adopted genomic technology at a much faster rate than any other beef breed, opening up the opportunities for seedstock breeders to make selection decisions based on the most accurate information.

Garry Edwards, CEO, AAM Investment Group focused on how technology is changing the way livestock is bought and sold.

‘Within the next 12 months we are going to see at least a doubling of animals available for sale online, but also linked to physical auctions, so people sitting at home can get their information in real time and participate in sales’, said Garry.

‘This gives people huge potential to maximise their profits in Angus cattle and I hope to see breeders take advantage of the technology,’ he said.

Jon Condon, Beef Central, called on livestock producers to use digital technologies, especially social media, to tell their own stories to defend farming’s social license.

‘Australia’s red meat industry has great stories to tell and any story about food was of human interest and thus suited to social media,’ he said.

Renowned celebrity chef and 2010 Masterchef winner Adam Liaw, gave the final presentation of the conference noting what an attractive position the Angus beef brand is in and how marketing, along with a quality product, has helped achieve that.

‘Angus beef producers are in an incredibly good position, as home cooks are becoming focused on not only nutrition, but also quality and brand recognition. The Angus brand is well recognized for quality and taste,’ he said.


Networking Opportunities

A trade show was held in conjunction with the conference giving attendees the opportunity for networking and interaction with other producers and industry service providers. On display were the latest technologies and products associated with progressive beef production.

An event such as the #GrowAngus National Conference would not be possible, without the support of our sponsors.



Full report will appear in the 2017 Winter Angus Bulletin.


From the media
‘Single-step’ genetic evaluation offers powerful selection tool, but it’s no silver bullet Beef Central 02 June 2017

Are Australian carcase weights getting too heavy for market requirements? Beef Central 29 May 2017

Focus on value of relationship with buyers farmonline 26 May 2017

Angus accreditation: Imitation a major challenge for breed The Weekly Times 26 May 2017

Technology biggest game changer for beef industry Seedstock Central 24 May 2014

Masterchef’s Adam Liaw on cooking the perfect steak, value-adding opportunities + video Beef Central 26 May 2017

Angus conference kicks off at Ballarat  Farm Online 18 May 2017

Immunity could boost beef industry The Land 18 May 2017

Scales in favour of ongoing strong beef bottom line  Farm Online 18 May 2017

Angus Australia taps into genomics’ power The Land 19th May

Teys’ vision for beef value Farm Online 22 May 2017

Harnessing digital media in the beef industry  Stock & Land 22 May 2017

Angus breeders look to protect their commercial advantage Stock & Land 23 May 2017

Building producer education and trust next big challenge in move to VBM Beef Central 23 May 2017

Raising the steaks among home cooks farmonline National 25 May 2017


Above: 2010 Masterchef winner, Adam Liaw, pictured with Angus Australia CEO, Peter Parnell, closed the #GrowAngus National Conference, letting delegates know that the best steak he has ever eaten was an Angus steak


Above: Delegates took some time out in between sessions to visit the trade stands

Feature image: 180 delegates enjoyed the wide range of topics covered at the 2017 #GrowAngus National Conference in Ballarat, Victoria, on May 18th & 19th