On establishing the Aberdeen-Angus and Charolais herds at Oakchurch, it was pretty clear what the management ethos would be for the herd; to produce productive cattle which are easy calving, fertile, growth, with optimal carcass and a good depth of pedigree.
The 100-acre fruit business is based on quality and delivering a product that tastes good, so the same desire is applied to the beef production side of the business. Particularly with the Aberdeen-Angus breed, it has a terrific brand name for both breeding cattle and retailing beef; to the beef farmer they are easy calving, maternal and easy fleshing and to the end consumer the beef is superior. So in order to fulfil all these expectations, Oakchurch turned to a mix of the best British and Australian genetics.
Australia was the focus for improving calving ease, eye muscle area, intramuscular fat and earlier growth rates with the British genetics adding that mix of breed character and a little added frame to suit the market place in the UK. The Charolais herd is moving in the same direction with the addition of Australian Charolais genetics from the Palgrove herd, as well as noted UK bloodlines.
Over the years the Oakchurch name has built a reputation for strong sales from home stretching across England, Wales and Scotland, as well as success stories in the sale rings at Worcester and Welshpool, as well as the show ring, largely with the Aberdeen-Angus on both summer and winter circuits.
The Charollais sheep now total 125 breeding ewes, with the addition of high performance tups from noted flocks. Both males and females are being offered both from home and at Society sales with an emphasis on length, locomotion, carcass traits and good, tight skins.