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Our Farmers: Meet Stuart from Morven Downs, Moree NSW

Tuesday 6 February 2024

Located on 2,800 acres of mineral-rich soil near Moree stands Morven Downs, a family operated mixed farming and cattle operation owned by Stuart McDouall and his wife Jayne.

Originally founded by Stuart’s grandfather in 1936, Stuart is now the proud third generation working on the farm, and comes from a long line of skilled and experienced farmers who have been working on the land in Australia since the 1800’s. Stuart and Jayne have now been living and working at Morven Downs for almost 30 years, and hope one day to pass the farm on to the next generation!

Today, Stuart runs a mixed farming operation, which means his farm produces both livestock and crops. Stuart’s cattle includes composite South Devon Angus cows, a breed known for producing exceptional marbling within its beef. Boasting 140 breeders within the growing herd, Stuart produces some of the best grass-fed beef we’ve ever tasted! 

Stuart also grows several varieties of crops including wheat, barley, chickpeas, sorghum, and grazing oats. And because they’re not busy enough, Stuart and Jayne also operate a spray contracting business!

One of Stuart’s main goals for his farm is the continued improvement of his pastures, to ensure the best quality grazing opportunities for his cattle. Stuart aims to continue keeping the high quality of his cattle up by feeding them well with an all grass-fed natural diet. To do this, he wants to continue growing forage crops (crops grown specifically to be grazed by livestock) and improving his pastures, as well as improving some of the less-farmed land on his property so it too can become permanent pasture for his cattle.

With over 30 years in farming, Stuart has experienced many ups and downs. From oppressive drought (particularly during the 2019 drought) to floods, he’s experienced just about every extreme in season and the challenges that come with them. However, Stuart’s strategic foresight in feed management, especially during dry spells, ensures the wellbeing of his herd. 

Having just experienced a very dry period over the past six months, this has affected the growth of his crops. But, now that they’ve enjoyed some more rain, Stuart’s straight back into planting more forage crops for his South Devon Angus cows, and thanks to his forward-planning, they planted enough forage prior to the dry period to see them through until their next crop is ready. 

As Stuart says, “You always try and keep as much feed up your sleeve as possible in case you come into a dry spot!”.

Collaborating with Our Cow marks a significant milestone for Morven Downs. This partnership brings stability in cattle pricing, allowing Stuart to focus on what he does best – raising top-quality beef. He loves working with Our Cow because of the consistency in price, the emphasis on high quality grass-fed produce, and having a great team of people to deal with every day. 

For Stuart, while there’s always challenges in farming, every day is different and he loves what he does - and enjoys eating top quality beef!

You can try some of Stuart’s delicious Angus beef in your next order here

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