25 November 2022

Mort & Co puts sustainability at the heart of its beef operations

Meeting a rising global demand for quality beef must be done with sustainability in mind. The largest Australian-owned lot-feeding and management company has launched new initiatives to minimise its environmental impact. This is a 60th Australian Export Awards winner case study.

Mort & Co is on track to become a billion-dollar company within 4 years. Turning over more than 230,000 cattle each year, it is the largest Australian-owned lot-feeding and management company in the country. 

Mort & Co is built on fostering strong relationships with global beef producers, processors and distributors. 

In addition to its core cattle operations, the company has invested in complementary businesses spanning stockfeed, organic fertiliser, farming and transport. 

A more sustainable approach to feedlot farming 

Meeting a rising global demand for quality beef must be done with sustainability in mind. Mort & Co has launched several sustainability initiatives over the past few years. These include commercial-sized trialling of methane-reducing feed additives in stockfeed. It is also exploring MEQ’s animal and meat grading technology to reduce days on feed, slash methane output and increase animal welfare. 

The company is also developing manure granulation with a focus on carbon retention. This has resulted in 3 fertiliser products. It is also looking into reducing emissions in the composting process. 

‘The complementary businesses that have become part of our meat business are indicative of our respect for the responsibility we have to create a sustainable industry,’ says Charlie Mort, Mort & Co’s Executive Chairman and Director. ‘We are proud to be operating a circular economy.’ 

Melbourne, Australia- July 31: Players of Australia pose for a team photo prior to the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 Group B match between Canada and Australia at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium on July 31, 2023 in Melbourne / Naarm, Australia. (Photo by Mackenzie Sweetnam - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
Brown and Hurley Toowoomba, Lucy RC Photography

A growing global herd

Mort & Co started its beef export business in 2015. It now exports to 13 countries. It is also exploring opportunities to start exporting its stockfeeds and organic fertiliser to Asia and the Middle East. 

Mort & Co continues to look for opportunities to increase its feedlot occupancy to meet a hungry global market. 

The company recently secured a land lease agreement with Rural Funds Management (RFM) to build a greenfield feedlot site with a 40,000-head capacity. It has lodged a Material Change of Use (MCU) application with the Rockhampton Regional Council. 

If approved, the new feedlot will supplement Mort & Co’s premium beef exports and allow it to supply more product worldwide. The development in Central Queensland will also include another fertiliser plant to continue the circular economy of its business. 

Fostering strong global partnerships 

In 2017, Mort & Co developed a Global Distribution Partnership Program (GDPP). The GDPP strategy aimed to secure 13 distribution partners across the US, China, Korea, the Middle East, Japan, Taiwan and Southeast Asia. 

Complementing the GDPP is the Mort & Co global insights team. The team explores the feasibility of new markets and partners. The company leverages its relationships with Trade and Investment Queensland (TIQ), Austrade and the Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE) to kick off discussions with suitable companies. 

‘We have worked closely with both Austrade and TIQ and have appreciated the support,’ says Meat Sales General Manager, Brett Williams. ‘Austrade and TIQ have helped facilitate contacts and potential customers in the global marketplace. They have also provided on-the-ground advice and support in China.’ 

Australian Export Awards encourage export growth 

Mort & Co were named as the Australian Export Awards Regional Exporter winner 2022. Charlie Mort believes recognition at the Australian Export Awards will allow the company to diversify its export markets. 

‘It also recognises the work of our staff, who ensure our international customers receive a high-quality product,’ he says.

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