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       NZ Herefords Youth Ambassador Report – The World Hereford Conference

I’ve now returned from my four weeks on the road travelling around Montana and Canada with many hours flying and travelling either in cars or buses. I experienced many new cultures and leant lots with meeting many new people and making many new friends from around the world. I was representing NZ Herefords at the World Hereford Conference in Canada in the Youth programme.

The pre-tour was a very good bus trip travelling from Vancouver to Calgary with amazing scenery and interesting history of the Canadian Rockies. The highlight was visiting the Douglas Lake ranch. It is Canada’s largest ranch with 7500 breeding cows and some years wintering more than 20,000 head of cattle and 300 horses. 

The night at Banff and part of the day in the Banff National Park was enjoyable also. There were high mountains in every direction you looked, with lots of wild life roaming about in the trees also. The 1888Banff Springs Hotel was an impressive old building.

The 16th World Hereford Council Conference was held at Calgary and Olds from 8th to the 24th of July

On Friday 13th July the country delegates reported on their country’s Herefords and beef industry with some very interesting reports from new Council members Kazakhstan and Switzerland.

Saturday 14th July was the official welcoming ceremony and technical speeches which were very worthwhile listening to. All speakers spoke from the forecast of the beef industry to the very scientific side of beef breeding with the explanation on what Genomic prediction can offer the industry, though to the development of 50K tests (prediction of how an animal may perform). Also that afternoon was the UFA Classic steer show held at the Calgary stampede. A Hereford cross steer was judged reserve champion.

As the Calgary Stampede was celebrating its centennial, 190,000 people turned up on Saturday alone. Making it a very big learning curve about how many people can attend a single event. Over the 10 days of the stampede 1.5 million went through the gates.

On that night we all went to the Chuck Wagon Races and watched the grandstand show. The Canadians sure do know how to put on a spectacular show and very good entertainment.

Monday 16th July was the day the shortened version of the annual Canadian Hereford Junior Bonanza show was held. I was lucky enough to have bull calf which belongs to the Richardson Family, Haida Gwaii Island BC. The bull calf was not placed in the conformation class but I was selected for the showmanship class. And while I was not fortunate to be placed it was great experience competing against other junior ambassadors that would have a lot more experience at showing cattle than me.

As part of the bonanza programme I entered a photo that represents NZ. This photo was taken by me, while working on Mt Aspiring Station, Wanaka. It won the senior section for the photography.

Tuesday 17th July, the open show saw a very large turnout of polled and horned Herefords that were all a very high quality which made it quite difficult for the judge to judge.

Wednesday 18th July was the final day of the conference with Rancher day taking place. This is a very different way of judging cattle - all the cattle were unled and three judges were on horseback. The cattle here were very high quality.

Overall the opportunity given to me by the NZ Hereford Association was extremely worthwhile with the conference being a great success.

Peter Kane

Email: westholm@farmside.co.nz | Phone: 03 204 8236 Westholm Polled Herefords - Blue Mountain Angus - KL1 Herefords