Simmental Breeder Putting his Money Where his Mouth is.

An East Coast Simmental stud breeder has put his money where his mouth is, securing the pick of the bunch at a South Australian Elite Production Bull sale earlier this year.

Tom and Adeline Sanson of Gold Creek Simmentals, Gisborne, secured the 944-kilogram polled bull, Woonallee Phar Lap, for $50,000 – topping the well-known annual event.

Tom ranked Phar Lap among the top three bulls he had seen in the ten or so years he had been attending the Woonallee Simmental sales.

“He ticks a lot of boxes. Composition wise, his length and depth is outstanding and he carries himself beautifully.

“We have our eye on an ambitious vision in terms of our breeding programme here at Gold Creek, and we are willing to do what it takes to realise that,” says Tom.

He says they’ve invested significant time and effort into searching for the right genetic material and Woonallee Simmentals have always delivered for them.

Tom’s focus is on breeding bulls with the explosive growth and power Simmental are long renowned for, as well as beefing up the carcass traits and producing cattle with good EMA, rib, rump fat depth and IMF – something that breeds such as Angus are more traditionally recognised for.

“We are striving to produce a class of animal that is largely unprecedented for the Simmental breed.

“We take a whole value chain approach and that includes a focus on the end product – a quality eating experience.”

He says on top of all of this he also maintains a strong emphasis on temperament as well as polled genetics.

“We want to be delivering the whole package to our clients and, yes that’s a bold vision, but we believe we can achieve it.
“With New Zealand being a small country our gene pool is obviously limited, so we decided to start introducing genetics from abroad some years ago.”

He says the move hasn’t been without its risks and challenges, though the benefits they’ve seen in the operation far outweigh any setbacks.
“In our pursuit of improving carcass traits, we have to ensure we don’t sacrifice too much growth, and I think Phar Lap is going to have a significant influence in that respect.

“Aside from being one of the best Simmental bulls I have ever seen, he’s a conduit between the old and the new, with all of the traits we are looking for in moderation – structurally sound, polled, docile and with outstanding phenotype.”
Phar Lap’s pedigree also speaks volumes – his sire has a New Zealand influence in the background so he should integrate smoothly into Gold Creek’s operation.

“As far as price goes, I don’t think $50,000 is unreasonable for a bull of that calibre – we have to spend money to make money and I have no doubt he will be worth his weight in gold.”