Success Stories - How Merinos Can Improve Your Bottom Line


Merinos … the most versatile breed for all environments

Many Merino producers are achieving outstanding financial returns through best practice flock management and business planning. 

Read the Case studies at the end of this page from a variety of producers from across the country.



In an evolving agricultural environment that often demands multiple income streams, research and field trials show the modern Merino is the leading breed when it comes to producing a variety of options across a range of markets and production systems.

In all states of Australia and in all environments, Merinos are proving more profitable results compared to other sheep breeds.

Through genetic advancement within the industry, Merinos are now strong competitors against terminal breeds, continually producing better lambing percentages and an improved ability to raise lambs with accelerated growth rates.

Because of the dramatic genetic improvement, the Merino wether has also become the ‘unlikely hero’ in sheep enterprises, now receiving some of the hottest competition at saleyards across the country.

With a lot more emphasis on body structure, size and quicker growth rates, wethers are now turned off at a much younger age than traditionally seen, being sold at six-months

By having this option to turn Merinos off at a much earlier age, they create the opportunity of a steadier income stream.

The ‘Breed More Merino Ewes’ campaign successfully highlights what Merinos are achieving not only as a sheep that produces the world’s most natural, sustainable fibre and great tasting protein, but a breed that can produce outstanding financial returns.

The word most used in the most recent case studies when producers are asked ‘“why Merino?” is versatility.

Read more below about what Merinos are doing for enterprises across Australia…….



A recent overhaul of their Merino flock to produce an article with the right balance of fat, muscle and carcase Merino producer Ricky Luhrs believes protein is where the consistent money is made, while wool is viewed as an opportunity cost.

“They outperform Dohnes that we have run in the past, we can run more of them and get more kilograms of lambs per hectare,” he said.

He describes the Merino wether lamb as his “flexibility in the system”.  In a good season he holds them to get a fleece prior to selling and in a tough season, they are sold as lambs.

Read the full case study in the Merino Sucess Stories below.



Unlike many of his neighbours who have opted for full cropping programs over the years, South Australian farmer Greg Hayes has never wavered from Merinos which fit perfectly into his production system.

He knows Merios will produce a premium wool clip as well as presenting a truly ‘dual-purpose’ animal.

Read the full case study in the Merino Sucess Stories below.


WAGIN (WA) farmer Andrew Scanlon doesn’t mince his words, farming is his business and he runs Merinos because they are the most profitable breed.

“I’m not here for lifestyle reasons, I’m here to earn a quid so it comes down to functionality and what earns the most money,” Andrew said.

“I’ve not seen any WA benchmarking information that says anything beats a Merino.

Read the full case study in the Merino Sucess Stories below.



Livestock consultant, Andrew Calvert, Tasmania, strongly believes the Merino breed provides more options compared to a straight composite-types operation.

He wants to inspire the next generation to become involved in such a promising industry.

“I have some clients that are focused on benchmarking their various operations and the advice they are getting is to reduce breeding cow numbers, increase breeding ewes and where the country allows, run a wether flock,” Mr Clavert said.

Read the full case study in the Merino Sucess Stories below.



For David and Debbie Mullins in Manildra, New South Wales, the hardiness and the versatility of the Merino has got them through the tough seasons.

“Merinos will always play a major part in our farm business; I don’t believe any other breed could do as well as they do out here.”

Read the full case study in the Merino Sucess Stories below.


Merino Success Stories

Many Merino producers are achieving outstanding financial returns through best practice flock management and business planning.

Here’s a snapshot of what producers from across Australia are saying about Merinos …

ed riggall wa

Merino Success Story – Ed Riggall (WA)

From an economic perspective, sheep meat and wool indicators are fantastic. If you’re not enthusiastic about the prospects of sheep meat and wool now, you’ll never be. On a sheep confidence index I would rate it as a 10 out of 10.

martin ramsay sa

Merino Success Story – Martin Ramsay (SA)

Merino profitability on my farm is driven by three key factors – stocking rate, bodyweight and fleeceweight. While these key factors vary year‐on‐year, I’ve seen a steady improvement in all of them since I’ve been benchmarking. This takes the guess work out of measuring profitability and you can get a clearer picture of where you’re going season to season.

james derrick

Merino Success Story – James Derrick (NSW)

I’ve done the calculations and Merinos come out on top. I’m switching back for ease of management, it’s much simpler and more efficient to run a single breed enterprise. I feel the Merino lambs will more than fill the requirements previously filled by the crossbred lambs.


Merino Success Story – David Taylor (TAS)

Over the past three years, the net profit per DSE from an average wool flock has outperformed an average prime lamb flock by about $2.30/DSE – an 18% higher return. The net profit/DSE over an average beef herd is even greater at about $2.90/DSE – or a 22% higher return.