The success of Quintarra Farms Esperance in winning two WAMMCO Producer of the Month titles in January and December 2010 served as a fitting final tribute to Mick Quinlivan – one of WA’s staunchest lamb industry supporters.
Mick had just retired as a foundation director WAMMCO when he died suddenly late last year.
His decision to invest in SAMM genetics and his unshakeable faith in the lamb and sheep industries, made Quintarra Farms one of Australia’s most productive lamb enterprises, with ongoing improvement now under the direction of Mick’s son Todd. “Fertility and nutrition are two areas that still offer potential for improvement and we continue to focus on them,” Todd said this week.
Quintarra’s December 2010 title was their sixth since the award started in September 2004.
The winning draft of 333 SAMM lambs was processed at Katanning on December 16 and averaged 23.53 kg to return $115.75 per lamb including WAMMCO Select bonus and skin.There was a WAMMCO Select bonus payment of $5.31 per head on 159 bodies, contributing $843.91, or $2.53 over the entire consignment.
An early observation by Quintarra farm manager Roger Webb led to the winning draft. “We do not normally deliver many lambs in December, but these had been dropped in June onto reasonable pasture and Roger noted that they were making excellent gains. We weighed them in early December and found them to be ready for delivery,” Todd said.
He said the fast gains being made by the SAMM lambs, even in tougher years, was reducing the amount of feedlotting required and this had been a further a bonus with this year’s higher grain prices.
Better prospects for wool were also reconfirming the valuable place for SAMMs as dual purpose sheep. “We are shearing at present and it is a pleasant change to be preparing wool for sale into such a positive market,” he said.
Todd said the Lambex conference in Perth in August had been a highlight for the year and had confirmed his family’s faith in the lamb and sheep industries. “More WA farmers are talking about going back into sheep, but we have yet to see how the talk translates,” he said.