Alto Angus at Caramut will host “Native Bred Angus” advocates Geordie and Julia Soutar of Scotland at its Beef Week Open Day on February 2.
"Native Bred" Angus are Angus whose pedigrees can be traced back to the original herd books and have no other imported genetics.
Joy Howley of Alto Angus said that despite Angus being the breed of choice for many world beef producers, "Native Bred Angus" were on the brink of extinction in 1995 with only 46 cows remaining.
Scottish whiskey grain trader Geordie Soutar decided the Native Angus were too good to lose and set about gathering the remaining suitable genetics to preserve and build the Native Angus herd.
Mr Soutar knew the great attributes of the original Aberdeen-Angus from his career working with Forfar livestock auctioneers Scott and Graham and his early years working with cattle.
In 1995 Mr Soutar, his wife Julia and children Duncan and Louise founded the Dunlouise herd at Forfar, Angus Scotland, naming it after Duncan and Louise.
After prolonged investigations, Mr Soutar had found nine Native Angus cow families that had never been crossed with imported genetics to create the building blocks for his new herd.
Mr Soutar has since not only preserved the “Native Angus” genetics, he has built an internationally recognised herd with embryos and semen exported around the world.
His well known sire Dunlouise Jipsey Earl E161 was recently awarded the American Angus Hall of Fame’s Pathfinder Award for producing daughters meeting rigid requirements for easy calving, regularity of calving and exceptional weaning weights.
An Australian herd had calved more than 800 heifers joined to sons of Jipsey Earl.
The Howley family at Caramut has been breeding Angus for 40 years and turned to Native Angus to find genetics better suited to its enterprise. In 2012 its first 'Dunlouise' Native calves were born.
It has since been importing more Dunlouise genetics to broaden the pool in its Alto Angus stud and commercial herd.
“In more recent times, other Australians wanting to produce a more moderate sized animal suitable for the grass fed premium beef market have also imported the Dunlouise genetics to Australia,” Mrs Howley said.
She said Native Angus cows weighed about 650 kilograms, were line bred with a pure Angus provenance, and had great constitution and maternal ability.
“We love our Native herd and using Native genetics within our commercial herd to improve type and cost of production has worked well for us,” Mrs Howley said.
“We are very much looking forward to the Soutar visit,” she said.