Bashing around 4,400 acre cattle property Wulfden, between Charters Towers and Townsville, father and son team Evan and Kade Collins are together building a sustainable future for the farming duo.
Father and son team building a sustainable beef enterprise
On the back of the ute, farm dog Zeba keeps watch while Kade, 10, and dad Evan tend to up to 400 head of trade steers destined for local and export markets.
It’s just the two of them on the property, but a lifestyle Evan is working to preserve well into the future.
He accessed a Sustainability Loan from the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA) in 2019 to invest in infrastructure improvements and cattle works, including drought mitigation measures, to make sure the property was sustainable long-term and a viable option for Kade, should he wish to take it up when he was older.
Evan said building sustainability on the property and for the farming business meant he was able to secure a full-time on-farm future for himself and ensure long-term viability.
He said his goal was to not have to rely on off-farm work in the future.
“I’m trying to make the most of the farm and become more sustainable,” he said.
Evan said he investigated a QRIDA Sustainability Loan to support higher productivity through investment in cattle yards, boundary fencing, water tanks, solar and other on-farm infrastructure.
“Without getting a Sustainability Loan from QRIDA it would have been harder to kick off. I wouldn’t have been able to live here and if you’re not on the property full-time it’s harder to manage,” he said.
“I want to make enough from the farm to be comfortable working here full-time.
"I would have struggled to do that without the loan.”
He said a QRIDA Sustainability Loan came with terms and on-farm support which suited his needs.
“There was a decent interest rate, I was able to pay it back over a length of time and the terms didn’t have a lot of pressure - so all those things were attractive,” Evan said.
Evan said having Kade by his side after school and on the weekends encouraged him to consider long-term viability options for the farming business.
“Without him I would probably sell. There might be a future down the track but we can see what he wants to do,” he said.
“It’s nice to be here together and I’d be lonely without him.”
Evan said he encouraged other producers to get in touch with QRIDA to see how a Sustainability Loan could support their plans.
QRIDA Regional Area Managers, in offices at Townsville, Innisfail, Cloncurry, Mackay, Rockhampton, Roma, Toowoomba, Kingaroy, Emerald, Bundaberg and Brisbane, are available to meet producers on-farm to discuss their options.
“If you need to build some infrastructure on your property, it’s a good idea to get in touch with QRIDA,” Evan said.
“It’s worth seeing what you can do with their help and I would go through QRIDA again in the future.”
To find out how this loan could help develop your farm business, visit our Sustainability Loan page.