McAngus doing wonders for farmers

TIM CRONSHAW
Last updated 05:00 05/04/2014

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Angus farmers could not be happier about the spinoffs coming from three million kilograms of angus beef going into McDonald's outlets.

Angus burgers have remained on the McDonald's menu since 2009 and helped to promote the beef cattle breed.

AngusPure chairman Tim Brittain said the McAngus programme has been instrumental in helping farmers grow demand for angus cattle; there had previously been little difference between the angus brand and other breeds.

Farmers had been well rewarded since and it had pushed the awareness of the breed in front of consumers, he said.

"It's been fantastic for the breed, all the angus programmes and brands, and for McDonald's it's been a successful burger and that's reflected in the volumes sold and that it's been a permanent part of their menu."

He said the prices and number of angus bulls sold at auction had continued to surpass all expectations since the burger range was introduced. Since 2009  there had been a 42 per cent increase in angus two-year-old bulls sold at auction and a 20 per cent increase in the average price.

Brittain said the progeny of bulls were coming on to the market and production needed to increase to meet demand.

Angus cattle stacked up with dairy support in farm profitability and was better than sheep and beef farming.

Brittain said McDonald's global profile provided angus farmers with an exciting prospect to show New Zealand's beef quality.

AngusPure has worked with the meat processing companies Silver Fern Farms and ANZCO Group, through its Riverland Beef operation, to supply  McDonald's.

McDonald's New Zealand managing director Patrick Wilson said restaurant owners were pleased to contribute to the success of local angus beef sales.

"ll our angus beef is sourced from New Zealand suppliers, so we're supporting local farmers and communities with every sale we make."

Last year McDonald's spent $170 million with local suppliers and exported $465m of  meat, cheese and other produce to McDonald's markets overseas.

The angus menu range has included the Grand Angus and Mighty Angus, with the Angus the Great burger returning to the counter last week.

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- Fairfax Media

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