There’s been plenty in the media about the Mad Cow scare in the US and how this will be a boon to the Australian meat industry.

The 7.30 Report typified the coverage with this piece last Friday:

These lines from reporter Tim Lester caught our eye as he talked up the opportunities in the Japanese market:

“Suddenly the world’s biggest beef exporter, Australia, is looking at some very tasty new market opportunities.

 

“Shares in the country’s second largest cattle company (Aust Ag) have jumped 15 per cent on the back of America’s mad cow.”

Firstly, it is worth remembering that Australia’s beef exports peaked at $1.7 billion a year before BSE and fell to only $1.2 billion in 2002. America’s woes won’t help Australia if global beef consumption dives as a result of the latest scare.

And how can Peter Holmes a Court’s Aust Ag be Australia’s “second largest cattle company” when it only has revenues of about $100 million a year?

We recently had the $490 million sale of AMP’s Stanbroke Pastoral division which hasnearly 500,000 cattle and 11.7 million hectares of land in Queensland and the Northern territory spread across 27 different properties. It has annual revenues of $250 million and is clearly the industry leader.

Then again, Aust Ag has 380,000 head, 29 stations and two feedlots which produce 40 million kilograms of meat each year and the beef industry remains quite fragmented.

A quick look at the IBIS data base throws up low-profile but giant foreign players in the Australian meat market although many of them are packers and wholesalers rather than straight cattle companies like Stanbroke and Aust Ag. Check out the following summaries from IBIS:

“Nippon Meat Packers Australia Pty Limited is a Foreign owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 252 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Wholesaling in Australia industry. For the 12 months to March 2003 the company generated total revenue of $860 million.”


“Tatiara Meat Company Pty Ltd


is a Foreign owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 1143 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Processing in Australia industry. For the 12 months to December 2002 the company generated total revenue of $149 million.”


“Cargill Australia Limited


is a Foreign owned Public Company that is ranked number 219 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Farm Produce Wholesaling in Australia industry. For the 12 months to May 2003 the company generated total revenue of $862.4 million. In 2003 Cargill had 1,210 employees in Australia.”


Kreglinger (Australia) Pty Ltd


is a Foreign owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 797 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Farm Produce Wholesaling in Australia industry. For the 12 months to December 2002 the company generated total revenue of $205.5. In 2002 Kreglinger had 195 employees in Australia.

The biggest local players

Then there are the giant but little known local players in the meat industry. Try these two for size as we’ve just added them to our expanding foreign ownership lists as companies which clearly generate more than $200 million a year from exports:

“Teys Bros (Holdings) Pty Ltd is a Locally owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 357 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Processing in Australia industry. For the 15 months to June 2003 the company generated total revenue of $870 million. In 2003 Teys Bros had 1,662 employees in Australia. The Chief Executive of Teys Bros is Mr Brad Teys and the Chairman is Mr Allan Teys.”

Sanger Australia Pty Limited is a Locally owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 465 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Wholesaling in Australia industry. For the 12 months to June 2003 the company generated total revenue of $482.2 million. In 2003 Sanger Australia had 20 employees in Australia.”


“Midfield Pastoral Pty Ltd


is a Locally owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 1030 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Wholesaling in Australia industry. For the 12 months to June 2003 the company generated total revenue of $160 million.”

“Tasman Group Services Pty Ltd is a Locally owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 1423 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Meat Processing in Australia industry. For the year to Decmeber 2002 the company generated total revenue of $140 million. In 2002 Tasman Group had 415 employees in Australia.”

“Heytesbury Pty Ltd is a Locally owned Proprietary companies that is ranked number 1873 out of the top 2000 companies in Australia. The company generates the majority of its income from the Beef Cattle Farming in Australia industry. For the 12 months to December 2002 the company generated total revenue of $56.5 million. In 2002 Heytesbury had 150 employees in Australia. The CEO of Heytesbury is Mr Paul Holmes a Court and the Chairman is Mrs Janet Holmes a Court.”

Finally, here is an interesting survey of the largest Australian meat packers but you should note that since 2001 Kerry Packer has merged his operation with the Teys family to create a meat business turning over more than $1 billion a year.  

Peter Fray

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