Mowanjum Aboriginal Corporation seeks private investor for cattle station

The group is said to be looking for A$20m to be invested in several tranches, but is not selling its land.

Australia’s Mowanjum Aboriginal Corporation is looking for private investors to invest in the development of a 15,000 head cattle station after the government agreed to allow freehold tenure over its land, according to local reports.

The group owns 55,000 hectares of land in Kimberley, in north-west Australia, and is seeking total investments of around A$20 million ($14.53 million; €13.4 million) in stages to develop 4,100 hectares of that into cattle farming, and is not looking to sell any land.

A government-funded Water for Food trial on the land last year lifted water for a centre pivot irrigation system over a land parcel slightly more than 35 hectares, successfully supporting cattle during the dry season.

Also located in Kimberley is privately owned leasing operation Yeeda Australian Rangeland Meat, which has about 95,000 cattle feeding from groundwater-irrigated land, and provides a potential model for large0scale operations in the area.

Chief executive Steve Austin told ABC Rural during the trials last year: “It’s all about intense grazing and putting kilos onto the beef as quickly as we can […] The quicker we can fatten them, the quicker we can send them to market.” He suggested that a cattle station project would also grow a variety of feeds to intensify operations.

Singaporean businessman and Pardoo station owner Bruce Cheung was one investor who sent cattle for the Water for Food trial, according to ABC Rural. Austin also told their reporters that investors including Macquarie had visited the land.