Barrie believes that beef production forms a stable, yet lucrative, income base provided a few critical relationships are understood. These relationships are between feed inputs, correct allocation of these feeds and the cost and return from their use within an overall farm system.
Genetics will play an increasingly important role in this system as efficiencies rise.
The best possible increase in productivity in beef (the ability to improve production from more efficient use of existing resources) is by crossbreeding.
Charolais cattle provide all the necessary attributes to achieve this boost by providing a crossbreeding sire that produces
extremely efficient progeny that not only calve well but grow well for high weaner prices or carcass attributes to return high slaughter prices at finishing. But only if the genetics are from known proven performers.
The NZCCS performance recording and genetic evaluation system provides the information - on this site, so at your fingertips - to access such profitable genetics as the base for a profitable beef enterprise.
Barrie has extensive practical experience as well as academic qualifications. He led NZCCS in the introduction of recording and the production of Charolais’ own BeefLink™ data recording program. It was Barrie who co-ordinated an International Beef Breeding Conference in 1999, “To provide New Zealand commercial beef producers the means to select for increased profitability of production”. This led to the development of Economically Relevant Traits (“ERT”) by Colorado State University which is further explained on this site. Bulls can be chosen using this method by using the ERT section of the Sire Selector.
Following completion of a Diploma in Dairy farming and four years on a large herd dairy farm Barrie completed a BAgrSc (Hons) at Massey University.
He was appointed Manager and was in charge of development (280 to 360 cows) for 4 years at Massey University No. 4 dairy farm.
For another 11 years he was Senior Lecturer Agricultural Economics and Farm Management, Massey University and Supervisor of No. 4 Dairy farm for 4 yrs during this time. Emphasis was monitoring and reporting requirements for farm systems.
This led to initial development of an integrated systems software program, later developed as “GSL” (www.grazingsystems.co.nz) which provides a unique combination of physical and financial functions to provide best allocation of resources, reported as the resulting best $ profit.
After leaving Massey University, Barrie and Robyn were owner/operators of a 460 ha sheep (2500 ewes) beef (280 breeding cows) for 17 years. It was during this time that Barrie purchased his first Charolais bull to use over his Angus cows. The resulting progeny were so impressive that Barrie decided to become involved and joined the Society.
This combination of practical and academic experience proved an ideal combination for finalising the basic framework for the BeefLink™ program that combines performance recording with genetic inheritance.
Barrie now runs a private Consulting business that utilises his knowledge of farming and agribusiness in both New Zealand and Australia.
This consultancy varies from “diagnostic” work to rapidly identify constraints and opportunities at farm level; to assessing the impact of strategic change at industry level. The GSL farm system program’s ability to distinguish the point where added investment results in reduced, rather than increased income, is the key to both these applications.
He has written many articles (both Referenced or for general reading) discussing and explaining many of the principles that clarify the farm systems required to ensure profitable and time sustainable farming outcomes.