Innovative Agriculture – Client Spotlight
James and John Henderson have run the Colodan property since 2009. The property breeds beef cattle and does backgrounding on two other properties.
The Henderson’s have been in business since 1930, James is the 4th generation on the land. Since 2009 the Henderson’s have taken steps to create a more innovative and sustainable future.
There are 600 breeders plus followers on 4600h of forest country. Most steers turned off to feedlots for either the domestic or export markets after backgrounding on the other properties. The cattle on the property are pure Santa Gertrudis with Angus bulls used for terminal sires.
In 2014, James used QRAA to buy one property from his father John and then QRAA again in 2016 to buy additional finishing country, thus completing the succession planning. At the end of 2016, John and James singed into a carbon deal with Green Collar on their main breeder property on Colodan.
James and John had looked into carbon earlier and were not impressed with what was offered. After months of research, they found Green Collar. The approach of Green Collar really suited their unique operation. They didn’t have to change much in their existing management plans. They were still able to still thin their country and there were no livestock exclusions zones.
Green Collar spent the time so the Henderson’s could have a project that really suited their operation and that made all the difference. The flexibility within the project was listed as one of the best parts and the ultimate reason why they signed up.
James ensured that before commencing this project that he spoke with Powers. Powers helped James to talk through the process and the financial ramifications of both the carbon project and the local referrer program. Powers was able to recognise the potential of carbon and similar projects to deliver positive outcomes for landholders.
As one of the fastest growing rural industries in Australia, Powers was able to recognise this project as a game changer, especially for producers who are eager to be involved.
The gains the Henderson’s received from regrowth control are getting lower. They used to get 10% lift in production, but the last time it was more like 7%. The cost of regrowth control is getting higher all the time.
The Carbon Project will sure up cash flow, reducing the risks associated with drought, pasture die back, and market pressures. The additional money brought in by the carbon can help with other projects within the business, greater legume establishment, more water points, fencing, debt reduction as well as getting better of farm assets.
James also ensured that he used Cash Cow Data to benchmark their herds over the last 10 years to ensure that they were confident with the numbers.
This innovative project taken on by the family has helped to contribute to their growth and success. James and John knew that this project would have tax implications. By working with Powers they were able to manage their business finances. After 12 months, they finally had an agreement.
James is now a local project referrer and assists in providing qualified leads to Green Collar. He is able to talk to landholders about land management activities that relate to eligibility, clearing history and stock management. James is also able to discuss how a project could integrate with other aspects of production.
Innovation does not stop there for the Henderson family. They are also using Moovement technologies, which uses GPS to track cattle. They use observant technology to monitor water supplies and a drone for pasture monitoring with Phoenix Mapping.
There is no denying that the agricultural landscape is changing when it comes to the types of technology that can be used. by informing themselves of the many innovative opportunities available to them, James and his business have been able to move into the future of agriculture, in the most innovative way.