THE South Coast Beef School Spectacular needs your help.
The now annual event which attracts a number of schools from the Shoalhaven, further down the coast to Batemans Bay and over in the Highlands needs more steers to be able to run the 2021 competition.
"We presently need to find an additional 12 steers," South Coast Beef media and communications officer David King said.
"Due to current market condition and prices, local cattle growers are holding onto their livestock, which means without stock we may not be able to run the annual South Coast Beef School Steer Spectacular event. "
The event, which will be in its fourth year, is set to be staged in early May in 2021 at the newlyrefurbished Nowra Showground cattle facilities.
"We would like to hear from any grower, who would be willing to put up steers for this event," Mr King said.
"We are not seeking a donation, we are looking for growers, who will be willing to sell steers to individual schools under commercial arrangements, where payment will be made on the sale of the carcass, at the end of the competition in May.
We are not seeking a donation, we are looking for growers, who will be willing to sell steers to individual schools under commercial arrangements, where payment will be made on the sale of the carcass, at the end of the competition in May.South Coast Beef media and communications officer David King
"We know it is a great season and producers are keen to hold onto their stock, but we need support to ensure this wonderful school-based competition can continue.
"This is the first time ever in the competition's history we have encountered any resistance to supply animals.
"Unfortunately, this year the good season and the good market seems to be working against us.
"We have schools coming on board and we've now got to help them locate steers for the event. It is certainly very challenging for the schools if they don't have a direct relationship with a grower."
The 2020 competition was staged during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the hoof and hook judging event held online.
Yass High School took out the overall grand champion award, Chevalier College in the Southern Highlands also wrote itself into the history books with a record-breaking and never seen before result of 99 out of 100 for the carcass component of the competition with a Murray Grey.
In 2021 the competition has added a heavyweight category which is expected to bring in more schools.
So far 16 schools have confirmed their participation and more schools expected to confirm their attendance.
"But some of these will only join us if we can secure more steers," Mr King said.
We already have 16 schools confirmed but we need more steers. This is the first time ever in the competition's history we have encountered any resistance to supply animals. Unfortunately, this year the good season and the good market seems to be working against us.South Coast Beef media and communications officer David King
Typically more than 30 children per school are involved which means more than 500 kids are actively engaged.
Mr King said it is crucial that animals be secured and confirmed as soon as possible.
"We envisage the animals will be delivered to the schools in late January and the students can start working with them, leading them, feeding them, grooming them and preparing them for the event," he said.
"All the feed is supplied by Manildra Stockfeeds and the students take on the responsibility of preparing the steers."
He said the animals usually arrive at the schools weighing around 170 kilograms and by the Steer Spectacular in early May can weigh more than 350kgs.
"We desperately want the event to continue and it will be held at the newly refurbished Nowra Showground cattle area, which has undergone a major upgrade, with a new arena, new grandstands, new sheds and facilities - the schools are keen, we just need the support of the livestock growers," he said.
The event will be held at the Nowra Showground on May 3-5, with carcasses judging on Friday, May 7.
If you can assist, please contact Rob Stafford on 0467 767 375 or email email@example.com
For more information on the event go to www.southcoastbeef.asn.au