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Opportunities to build resilience of beef cattle properties in the mulga lands of south-western Queensland, Australia

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Bowen, M. K., Chudleigh, F., Sallur, N. M. and Sommerfield, J. (2022) Opportunities to build resilience of beef cattle properties in the mulga lands of south-western Queensland, Australia. The Rangeland Journal, 44 (2). pp. 115-128.


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1071/RJ21057

Publisher URL: https://www.publish.csiro.au/paper/RJ21057


Beef producers in the mulga lands of south-western Queensland and north-western New South Wales, Australia, face the challenges of inherently low productivity and profitability, exacerbated by widespread pasture degradation and high climate and market variability. Our objective was to use the farm-management economics framework to assess the ability of management strategies and investment options to improve profitability and build the overall resilience of beef cattle properties in the mulga lands. Options were assessed for a hypothetical, representative beef cattle property in south-western Queensland (20 000 ha; initial stocking rate 600 adult equivalents). Firstly, strategies were assessed for their ability to improve profitability when operated as a beef business. Secondly, two alternative investment options were assessed: (1) conversion to rangeland meat goat production; and (2) conversion to carbon farming through carbon sequestration. Herd and economic modelling software were used to conduct property-level, partial discounted cash-flow budgets to assess each strategy over a 30-year investment period. Results indicated very limited potential to improve the profitability and resilience of an existing beef cattle enterprise in the mulga lands. However, full or partial conversion to rangeland meat goat production or carbon farming improved property-level returns and viability.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:carbon farming, decision making, drought management, extensive grazing systems, farm-management economics, goats, modelling, profitability, rangeland management, rangelands, technology adoption.
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural economics
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Farm economics. Farm management. Agricultural mathematics
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agriculture and the environment
Animal culture > Cost, yield and profit. Accounting
Animal culture > Cattle
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Animal culture > Feeds and feeding. Animal nutrition
Agriculture > By region or country > Australia > Queensland
Live Archive:13 Jun 2022 02:39
Last Modified:06 Jul 2022 06:18

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