With the cost of beef slow to come back in line with saleyard and over-the-hooks prices, more producers are weighing up the value in having their own stock killed on farm.
Mobile butcher, Brad Chisholm, Chisholms On Farm Butchery at Euberta near Wagga Wagga, estimates inquiries had risen 25 per cent this year.
Mr Chisholm, who ran the business with his uncle before buying it four years ago, said most of his clients were within a one hour radius.
Spring was his peak season.
"A family is normally a steer (in terms of what they get processed) and maybe five sheep, that's for say three or four kids with mum and dad," Mr Chisholm said, for what they'd use in 12 months.
He was also seeing some families double orders for maybe a steer and a dozen sheep.
Molong on-farm butcher, David Moller, who operates Orange On Farm Butchers, put the increase in demand partly down to the supermarket prices compared to the saleyards.
In spite of recent drops in saleyard prices, retail was still relatively high, such as seen in supermarkets in Wagga Wagga recent weeks.
For instance, in the past fortnight, T-bone steak ranged from $30 a kilogram to $38.99/kg and mince from $11/kg to $17.99/kg.
Meanwhile, Mr Moller quoted an average 300kg carcase of beef processed on farm for a client as costing around $1100 as a base.
"A lot of when I started to get busy was during COVID-19, when supermarkets were restricting how much meat people could buy, that's when demand for me really took off," Mr Moller said.
Both Mr Chisholm and Mr Moller said demand had continued for on-farm butchery services, despite retail supplies revovering post COVID-19 lockdowns, also partially driven by producers knowing how their own beef had been raised.
Mr Chisholm said the process all took place on the client's property, with the animal dispatched and hung in one of his eight chillers for a week and then butchered on farm.
As more beef and sheep producers used these services, he said he was seeing more varied requests around the products into which the animals were being broken down.
"Sausages and mince, years and years ago, used to be a cheap product. Now they're not," Mr Chisolm said.
"I see a lot of secondary type cuts, the blade or the round tops, those sort of things going more towards your easier meals, like your minces and spaghetti bolognese, your rissoles for that sort of stuff, it's really turned around."
More clients were also wanting to be involved in the process and were adding home-grown ingredients to sausages, he said.
"It's really good when a customer wants to be part of the whole process and they'll pick some rosemary from their garden or they might have a beehive on their farm, well, they'll come down to the butcher's truck and we'll make some sort of recipe that they would like," he said.
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