Itís Your Money > Starting and Running a Business

Beef farming?

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Has anyone seen much by way of cattle farms there?
Any ideas on whether or not it could be profitable?

All the beef sold here is from local ranches around the Country, except the cheapest, (in this area anyway in the markets), Assie beef imported.† No better then Pinoy beef and maybe a bait and switch for a higher price?

If the right cattle could be brought into the Country, it would be a money maker in heavy populated expat and affluent Pinoy areas if, one could afford the setup cost and proper butchering.

From my POV, a BIG major investment getting the cattle in, building a feed lot, barns,† proper feed ect. Not easily done!

Just like US beef, Aussie beef has been bred for 200 years for fine lean cuts of meat. They bring in the Aussie beef because it is close by, good quality and they can be fattened up once they arrive before being butchered, but yes feed is the biggest issue. Pinoy cattle have the advantage in that they have been raised for the climate, but would not say they are as good as Aussie Beef or USDA beef for that matter.

It is something I looked at a a self sustaining business before we came over, but the startup costs were to high. It depends on your market and the type of beef you are trying to raise and finding a competent vet, who does not just treat pigs, knows about artificial insemination and how to implant an embryo. I looked at hybridizing Australian beef embryos into domestic cattle, so they would pick up the immunities to local diseases from their mothers, and at the same time become acclimated to the weather.

One of the biggest issues is space, in Australia, one head of dairy cattle requires on acre of grass to feed on every day or the equivalent amount of hay. If the same is true here, 10 head would require 4 hectares, and 100 head 40 hectares, rotating through the pasture every couple of days allowing time for the grass to regrow. In my travels I have yet to see a truck carrying hay, in the US and Australia they were everywhere. A close friend had 200 head of dairy and 800 acres of land and it was a full time job for him and his wife moving the cattle daily, bringing enough extra hay and at the same time getting up at 4 each morning for the milking.

Getting back to the issue of space, here in RP space is limited and its more than likely used for planting of rice than turned into open pasture for beef. Not to many open rolling hills here, most of it is covered in trees, and then you have the issues of clearing the land, and the environmental aspects associated with it. Anywhere you can find enough open rolling hill side, there is probably a town or village sitting on it.

At the moment beef is about 160p for low quality cuts, I paid 340p a kilo for ribeye recently, or $8.50 a kilo, not super expensive, but as the cattle raiser you will probably only get 1/4 of that for yourself unless you are catering to a local butcher, oh I forgot, none of those exist here. I haven\'t been able to find a nice cut of meat here since I arrived, unless I slice it myself, and the fat costs as much as the meat, go figure. Figure in your startup costs and the fact that you won\'t have a marketable product for at least 2 years, yet you have to feed them, cover vet costs and your laborers, if you do the math, unless you have a million dollars to drop for a 2 year investment, better look elsewhere.


Del Monte imports cattle from OZ to fatten on the abundant excess pineapple pulp (also free) and has had a feedlot in the Camp Phillips area for over 60 years. It\'s a side line for them and accommodated the American staff back in the day. Also had a dairy for fresh milk and butter. Not sure if that still exists. They ship some of this beef around the PI to various markets. I will find out more when I arrive there in May. I did transport some T Bone steaks from Cagayan to Bohol on behalf of my hosts. They were comparable to US meats. Del Monte supplied the dry ice and the certificate proving registered facility/feed lot so Cebu Pacific would accomodate on flight back. I forget cost but maybe P600/ kilo? I forget actually.

Steve and Jenny\'s prime meat shop will be taking orders soon, ha.


Manila Cockney:
Batangas beef is considered the best in Philippines. Too tough for steaks but good for slow cooking. Batangas also famous for Bulalo, the soup made from beef bone marrow.

At least in Manila no problem getting a good imported steak either in a good hotel restaurant or supermarket, as long as you are willing to pay for it.

A friend of mine over on business from Hong Kong staying at Peninsula took me to Old Manila restaurant inside the hotel. 2 starters, 2 large US rib eyes, no dessert, coffees for both of us, 3 SMBs and 2 bottles of imported fizzy water, total cost 16,000 pesos. That was 2 years ago.


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