AACo seeks to beef up its branding as Wagyu wins contracts

AACo seeks to beef up its branding as Wagyu wins contracts
AACo seeks to beef up its branding as Wagyu wins contracts

AACo chairman Donald McGauchie is determined the cattle company operates at the top of the price pyramid with every product, from is award-winning Wagyu beef, its live export cattle and its manufacturing beef from the Livingstone Beef processing facility.

"We are determined that every piece of beef we produce is of the highest-possible quality to deserve that premium pricing," he told shareholders recently.

The focus drove a 42% increase in boxed beef sales to $267 million, comprising 77% of the company’s revenue in the 2015 financial year, up from 59% in the previous financial year.

The company recently completed construction of the $91 million Livingstone Beef processing facility at Darwin enabling the selling of boxed beef to global markets including Asia and the United States. Livingstone IS a 45-minute drive south of the Northern Territory capital, that cost more than $90 million.

"Building our brands is the next stage of transforming and growing the business as Australia’s oldest listed company, AACo has a long, rich and vibrant history which is a powerful and attractive brand in itself," he advised.

Its Wagyu success story sees Fire & Ice in Dubai, Tosca in Kuala Lumpur, Cha Cha Char in Brisbane and in Sydney, Sake and Restaurant Atelier among the fine dining restaurants who serve AACo Wagyu to their diners

"Our Wagyu continues to win awards for its taste and tenderness, with AACo’s flagship Master Kobe Wagyu named Grand Champion Beef at the 2015 World Wagyu Conference at Yeppoon in May," he said.

Last year the company’s Darling Downs Wagyu was named the Champion Wagyu at the Sydney Royal Spring Fine Food Show and won Gold medals at the prestigious Royal Melbourne Fine Food Awards, Australia’s premium fine food awards, and the Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show in May this year Darling Downs Wagyu was named the Grand Champion beef of the Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show.

He suggested AACo was at the forefront of technology, genetics and helping to set direction for one of the most exciting and rapidly growing food markets in the world.\

"Wagyu now comprises almost 42% of all boxed beef sold by the company, but makes up 52% of all boxed beef revenue.

"More importantly, the success of our Wagyu program provides us with the opportunity to create premium and super-premium brands we can leverage for our other beef brands.

"It also allows us to build certainty with our customers, and build longer-term relationships because it demonstrates the effort we are putting into building sustainable brands," he said.

Boxed beef revenue increased by $79 million in the 12 month to March 31, while cattle sales decreased by $49 million.

Beef sales revenue increased to $267 million, while live sales of cattle to third parties from feedlots was significantly reduced, in line with its strategy of maximising value through the entire supply chain.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott formally opened The Australian Agricultural Company’s Livingstone Beef facility near Darwin earlier this year.

The facility, which began operations in October last year, will eventually have the capacity to process 220,000 head of cattle a year on a two-shift-a-day basis. 

In July last year, the company purchased Pell Airstrip and Tortilla near Darwin, which acts as a hub for the company’s activities in northern Australia, including the Livingstone facility.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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