Stanley Vale Merino Stud - News & Views

The rise and rise of MSA

31 July 2015

The growth in MSA shows no sign of slowing down, with the 2014-15 results breaking more records.

Here are some of the highlights:


Over-the-hooks premiums for MSA yearling cattle averaged 33¢/kg above non-MSA yearling cattle compared to $0.29/kg in 2013-14 (Source: NLRS OTH reports).National-MSA-beef-grading-numbers.jpgMSA yearling cattle in Queensland received the greatest average premium of 40¢/kg (compared to 32¢/kg in 2013-14). Average premiums of 26¢/kg were reported in NSW (similar to 2013-14's 25¢/kg).  A 6% increase in the number of cattle presented for MSA grading – representing nearly an additional 200,000 head.  The MSA Index was 57.61 (national average), an increase of 0.84 points on the previous year, representing a significant increase in eating quality of MSA cattle nationally. Even with the difficult seasonal conditions faced by producers this year, compliance to MSA requirements was the same as 2013-14, at 93%. MSA requirements do not include company specifications but relate to meeting pH, meat colour and fat coverage requirements. High pH and/or dark meat colour were again the main reasons for non-compliance.


A 24.5% increase in the number of sheep processed using MSA pathways and identified as MSA to the end user. 3.47 million lambs were MSA trademarked in 2014-15, compared with 2.78 million in 2013-14. Victoria was the largest producer of MSA lambs, accounting for 48% of the total.

Producer adoption

Producers registered for MSA increased by 12%, with 41,973 now registered across Australia (from 37,616 in 2013-14). Of the new producers, 3,500 are eligible to supply cattle  and 2,200 are eligible for sheep. myMSA  was launched in August 2014 and already 1,030 producers have logged in 5,457 times to access carcase grading feedback.

Brands and end users

21 additional MSA beef and/or lamb brands were licensed, taking the total to 131. Of these, 115 are beef specific, 12 are lamb specific and four are multi-species. 917 additional end user outlets (wholesale, supermarket, retail and foodservice) were licensed to use the MSA trademark, an increase of 33% on 2013-14. There are now 346 MSA licensed wholesalers supplying 3,330 MSA licensed foodservice and retail outlets.


2,423 producers participated in MSA training;  196 processor operatives participated in MSA optimisation training; 161 processor operatives from 24 abattoirs completed MSA processing training (beef and sheep); 23 new MSA graders were accredited; and 36 people completed the week-long MSA Meat Science course. 820 end users were trained – an increase of 12% from 2013-14 with 60% utilising online training tools.



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