Training transforming the feedlot landscape

A third-generation, Queensland-based cattle, beef and food processing company is opening up more career opportunities to its staff from their very first day on the job. 

Peter Brace first reviewed Feedlot TECH as part of his role as learning and development manager at Queensland-based cattle, beef and food processing company, Australian Country Choice (ACC). He was hooked.

“I went home and sat down with my laptop to watch the rest of it,” he chuckled. 

“It was just fascinating and I couldn’t believe the quality. It’s quite impressive.” 

Three months on and Australian Country Choice has now implemented the practice, education and training modules for all its feedlot employees. 

Changing training forever 

Peter said switching from a workbook-based approach to interactive videos and learning modules has been well-received by staff, with each new staff member signed up to undertake the training as part of their onboarding process. 

“The feedback from staff has been excellent because it’s such quality content and it’s certainly changed the way we train staff in the fundamentals of lot feeding,” Peter said.

“We’re now able to give them greater exposure to the industry much more quickly. They can be working as a pen rider but we’re still exposing them to the mill side and how it all fits within the whole supply chain.

“It really helps speed up their knowledge of their role and the why in terms of importance to the whole industry.”

What’s the crowd favourite? 

The feeding and milling training modules have been popular at ACC, with the company’s three feedlots in southern Queensland running a combined 56,500 head and offering custom feed programs. 
“For the guys and girls in milling, they generally come in and only learn the fundamentals of running the mill but they don’t learn the technical side, so the detail in those courses has been fantastic,” Peter said.

And a personal favourite for Peter?  “I don’t have a background in the industry and I found the Cattle Backgrounding and Induction video series absolutely fascinating,” Peter said. “I went home and watched it in great detail.”

Care and compassion in spades

While Peter grew up on a farm, his career background is in contract training consultancy. 

He’s worked across various industries over the past 30 years, helping businesses improve or implement training that help staff become more adept and efficient in their roles. 

Learning the ins and outs of the processing side of ACC and the broader scope of agriculture has been a fascinating experience, Peter says. 

“I was at Opal Creek Feedlot in the veterinary area and I watched as one of the girls patted every single cow on the head as she put it into the race to give it its medication,” Peter recalled. 

“You just can’t teach compassion like that.”

“I’ve never seen anything like it’

Having worked in several varying sectors, Peter’s found himself reflecting on the strength of training and education within the feedlot industry. 

“I was just saying to someone the other day that coming from outside of the industry, I have been absolutely blown away by the quality and availability of material through the various associations that exist within the industry,” Peter said. 

“I’ve never seen anything like it across the many, many other industries I’ve worked across and that’s a real credit to the feedlot industry that there’s so many resources available to make it even better.” 

Learn how to navigate your way around the Australian Feedlot Training Education and Careers Hub through a guided Feedlot TECH walkthrough on YouTube. Feedlot TECH courses cover all feedlot departments; administration, feeding and milling, livestock, maintenance and environmental, and management.