The Ardo Hereford herd:
- Is an Ezicalve herd
- Produces 250 bulls for sale annually (mostly as yearlings)
- Is one of only four New Zealand Hereford Association “Herds of Excellence”
- Is a New Zealand “Steak of Origin” producer of the decade
- Calves 650 stud Hereford cows and heifers in September and October
- Embraces science, technology, performance recording and objective selection to produce performance leading cattle.
The Ardo herd objective is ‘To breed quiet Poll Hereford cattle that are born easy, grow fast, and can quickly finish to optimum specifications on our meat schedules’. We supply beef and dairy farmers with bulls that are easy to handle, provide a stress free calving and that the resulting calves command a premium.
The performance of the Ardo Hereford cow herd must be financially comparable to all other livestock classes and enterprises at Morrison Farming. Key management and performance requirements include:
- Cows are farmed on steep Rangitikei hill country, competing with sheep, for 12 months of the year.
- Heifers must get in-calf at 15-16 months of age, conceive and calve unassisted every year.
- Sires are progeny tested as yearlings.
- All cattle are farmed in large contemporary mobs with no preferential treatment.
- All Ardo Hereford cattle have guaranteed quiet temperament.
- All cattle are performance recorded and measured for birth weight, calving ease, growth rate, carcass yield and intra-muscular fat.
- All animals that do not meet the required measures and the above criteria are culled.
Over 50 years of performance recording, objective selection and targeted genetic gain has enabled development of a highly productive herd with many EBV and Index leading Hereford cattle.
Follow @MorrisonFarming on Twitter for a day-to-day insight into this large, high production beef herd.