Philip and Katherine McCallum and Briar Swanson ​of Rockley Farm


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2024 Southland Finalists: Philip and Katherine McCallum and Briar Swanson ​of Rockley Farm – Sheep, Beef and Dairy Grazing

The team at Rockley Farm is dedicated to continuous improvement and growth – both on-farm and in terms of their contribution to young farmers and the local community 
Rockley Farm was originally owned by Kath McCallum’s parents. She and her husband Philip have lived on the Balfour property since 2013, and in 2020 took full ownership and expanded it to include MCM Dairies Ltd. 
The two properties support each other and have provided the opportunity to employ Briar Swanson who is actively involved in the property’s continuous improvement. 
Rockley Farm is dedicated to sheep breeding and finishing, and an Angus stud, with the couple building on the 50-year foundation laid by Kath’s parents. On this land they run 1,100 ewes and 350 hoggets – finishing lambs at 18.5kgs. 
The Angus stud has grown over the years and the team has developed bulls that suit Heifer mating. About 30 bulls are sold annually. 
The dairy component runs up to 320 cows, with heifers returned incalf after 18 months. Crops are grown for wintering of the dairy cattle and young stock from the Angus stud. 
The judges were impressed with the property’s excellent infrastructure, including modern stockyards. They said the team’s forward-thinking approach is illustrated by the use of technology such as Genomic DNA testing which provides a clear and comprehensive picture of stock make-up. 
Excellent animal welfare and stockmanship are key drivers for the business, along with a commitment to fostering growth and learning by nurturing young farmers and being involved in the local community.  
The property’s biodiversity is enhanced by an area of native bush, habitat creation and extensive riparian planting that was started by Kath’s parents.  
Working together as a team, Philip and Kath are ensuring that Rockley Farm will continue to thrive into the future.

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