One crop, two income streamsSeptember 17, 2021
Why winter graze ‘n’ grain canola is a win-win.
The research and development of seed technology is constantly creating new avenues for growers to maximise their profits.
A recent example of this is the significant uptake of graze ‘n’ grain canola across Australia.
The Pacific Seeds range not only boasts Clearfield® herbicide tolerance, but offers growers an exceptional grazing option and high grain production.
Craig Farlow, Elders Rural tech services manager for Victoria and the Riverina, has been particularly impressed with the dual-stream potential for mixed-cropping enterprises.
“Canola growing prices are above average, upwards of $800 a ton. But we’ve also got high livestock prices, particularly for fat lambs,” Craig said.
“So where we’ve got the dual-purpose cropping options for those mixed farming operations, we’re seeing sort of game-changing gross margins coming out of the paddocks that growers are both grazing, getting a grazing off those paddocks early in the season, and then locking them up for growing,”
“Last year with the cool mild finish we saw paddocks yielding in excess of four tons to the hectare. And we had that Australian record crop yielding upwards of seven tons a hectare. So tremendous income earning capability, profitability for growers.”
Grazing has also proven to maximise returns. Glen Barnett, from Derby in Central Victoria, grows wheat, barley, canola and legume and runs 1,000 ewes with lambs at foot.
“I was chasing a variety that would suit my enterprise – a dual-purpose enterprise.” he stated, “and to be able to fill that feed gap for the ewes and lambs in the autumn.”
Glen grows Hyola Feast CL – an early maturing graze ‘n’ grain winter hybrid.
“So the overall benefit of Feast is to maximise every acre that I’ve got for the livestock that I run.
“I generally grow Kittyhawk wheat. It’s never quite ready to graze, and Feast fills that gap. It comes in a month earlier and you can bounce from one to the other.”
Glen’s seen impressive weight gains, with young lambs putting on 300-310 grams a day – up from 220 grams when the ewe’s just on grain. He also noted that ewed maintain their weight while the lamb’s on them.
Gaze ‘n’ grain is being planted across all of Australia’s canola regions. Elders Agronomist Josh McLeod, based in Central Victoria, sees the Pacific Seeds range – Hyola 970CL and Hyola Feast CL – as a good fit for the area.
“With the 970 or the Feast canola, it gives the growers a bit more opportunity to spell pasture paddocks or other grazing crops while they’ve got their livestock on these grazing canolas,” he noted.
“It offers growers a lot more flexibility with sowing windows and it’s still very much an opportunistic crop in the area, but there’s huge gains to be made with gross margins per hectare growing these varieties for mixed farmers.”
To find out more about the impressive versatility and potential returns that Pacific Seeds’s graze ‘n’ grain hybrids offer, visit pacificseeds.com.au/canola-stacked.