All You Need to Know About WagyuEdge Conference 2021

The WagyuEdge 2021 Annual Conference takes place 27-29 April at RACV Royal Pines on the Gold Coast.

This is excellent news for a popular annual event that could only happen virtually last year due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Key points

  • WagyuEdge 2021 Annual Conference takes place 27-29 April.
  • The venue for WagyuEdge 2021 is RACV Royal Pines on the Gold Coast.
  • Highlights of the event include Wagyu Branded Beef Competition medallists awards, the Elite Wagyu Sale, and a Gala Dinner.
  • The event is followed by a three day tour of Wagyu breeding properties and feedlots from from Gold Coast to Rockhampton.

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Ridgeback TM at Darwin cattle yards


First year of Hybrid Conference

The excitement for the event is heightened because this is the first hybrid version of the WagyuEdge Conference.

Attendance can be in person or virtual. This makes it possible for international stakeholders to experience the event even though they cannot attend in person due to the ongoing global pandemic. The decision to adopt a hybrid approach is expected to mean that there will be more attendees than the usual 400-600.

The timing of WagyuEdge 2021 is no coincidence. Organisers planned the dates carefully so that people who attend in person can participate in the tour that follows the conference and then attend the Beef 2021 industry event.

Program for the WagyuEdge Conference 2021

Highlights of the WagyuEdge Conference 2021 include the Wagyu Branded Beef Competition medallists awards, the Elite Wagyu Sale, and a Gala Dinner.

The Australian Wagyu Association is also announcing the launch of its Progeny Test Program at the event.

Here is a breakdown of what to expect in more detail.

Day One

The focus of the first day is Wagyu production and genetics at an entry level.

Dr. Rob Banks and Dr. Kirsty More of AGBU will look at how Net Feed Intake and Wagyu population structure affect Australian Wagyu and trends in genetics.

AWA chief executive Dr. Matt McDonagh will talk about the Wagyu progeny test program.

The day will end with an announcement of the top-performing sires in the AWA Net Feed Intake Program.

Day Two

Australian and international speakers take centre stage on day two.

This includes:

  •       An overview of the premium beef market following 2020, by MLA managing director Jason Strong.
  •       Insights into the development of a Longford Wagyu herd by AWA Life Member Arthur Dew.
  •       Details of the Stone Axe Wagyu program from Stone Axe Pastoral’s MD Scott Richardson.
  •       Information about Australian Country Choice entering the Wagyu industry from ACC CEO Anthony Lee.
  •       Insights into Wagyu feeding strategies and what can be learned from the Japanese Wagyu Industry from Wagyu Fellowship Recipients Gerard Roney and Jeremy Cooper.
  •       Presentations by Prof Takafumi Gotoh and Professor Kenji Oyama about production systems and genetic improvement in Japan.

This is also the day when the Elite Wagyu Sale takes place.

In the evening, the 2021 Wagyu Branded Beef Competition winners are announced at the Wagyu Edge Gala Dinner.

Day Three

On day three, the conference welcomes global innovators in Wagyu breeding.

  •       From the US, Bob Estrin from Lone Mountain Ranch will talk remotely about genetic development in the US Fullblood Herd.
  •       Gerard Hickey from Firstlight Farms in New Zealand will talk about the company’s Wagyu production systems.
  •       From Woodview Wagyu in South Africa, Brian Angus will talk about the development of South African Wagyu.
  •       Australian Country Choice GM Rural Christian Coffey will present details of the company’s Wagyu program development.
  •       Matias Suarez, regional manager at AA Co, will talk about the company’s breeding and genetics innovation.
  •       Managing Director of Irongate, Peter Gilmour, will provide details of his genetic progress and development methodology for the Irongate herd.

Following the talks, there will be a panel session about herd building featuring Christian Coffey, Peter Gilmour, Matias Suarez, Scott Richardson, and Arthur Dew.

A much-anticipated event then comes to a close.



Those who have chosen to do so will join the three-day tour from Gold Coast to Rockhampton. The tour leaves Gold Coast on 30 April and arrives in Rockhampton on 2 May. People who join the tour get to visit several prominent Wagyu breeding properties and feedlots before arriving in Rockhampton in time for the Beef 2021 event.


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