Livestock Preparation

Eligibility to many markets relies on certain requirements being met prior to slaughter and this begins on the farm.

lamb preparation

Be aware of regular changes to livestock preparation requirements

For example, chilled destined product can only be washed once before slaughter. At present the schedule does not fully reflect how livestock are presented for slaughter and the subsequent affects this has on eligibility for specific processes and markets. It is forseeable in the future that livestock payments will contain rewards for stock presentation.

Issues that relate to livestock presentation for slaughter are emptying out of livestock prior to trucking, stockyard conditions, wool length, stock crate condition and animal handling. Animal welfare is a very important issue that is gaining prominence and this is especially so in our developed markets.

1.  Emptying out

All livestock should be taken off feed at least four hours prior to trucking. Full animals increase faecal stain and increase the washing time at the plant. Most animal classes do not lose dressed carcass weight in the first 24 hours if water is provided. All yards at Taylor Preston are watered.

4.  Stock Crate Condition

Carriers are responsible for keeping stock crates clean and ensuring maintenance is up to standard. Emptying stock out helps with this. Any concerns regarding stock crate conditions should be reported to your livestock agent.

2.  Stockyards

Replace all broken boards in yards and races. Ensure all nails are hammered home. This prevents cuts and bruising. Try to avoid using excessively muddy or wet yards if possible. Dust can also cause washing problems particularly with longer fleeced sheep.

5.  Animal Handling

This is a welfare issue but also has implications on the quality of the final product. Actions should be taken that places the animal under the least amount of stress. Carefully handled animals are less likely to suffer injury and will record a lower pH measure. pH measure is related to meat quality and tenderness. It is a measure that more emphasis is now being placed on.

3.  Wool Length 

The optimum wool length is 4-5cm or half a finger. Any longer than this then the washing and drying time is increased. The butchers like some wool to grip, though too much increases contamination. Less wool is preferable to more. 

6.  Identification 

In addition to livestock presentation suppliers should ensure their livestock is clearly identified. It is a case of the more information provided the better. Cattle branding is best done using an oil based paint with the owners initials marked on the animal. The colour used, brand and area of animal marked should be recorded on the trucking card and vendor declaration form. Other useful information is animal breed and earmark/tags.

Grading System

Taylor Preston adheres to the Meat New Zealand standard grading system for processing

sheep grading

Meat New Zealand grading system classifications:

Sheep Classifications

Beef Classifications

Until October 1999 all New Zealand livestock sent to slaughter were graded under one nationally administered grading system. Asure New Zealand Limited audited grading at the processing plants by randomly visiting and assessing the grading.

Whilst it is now possible for an individual processor to grade to a unique and complete new set of standards most - including Taylor Preston - have remained using the Meat New Zealand standard grading system. The main advantage of staying with this system is familiarity - for producers, buyers and sellers of New Zealand meat alike. Some processors have offered a slight variation to the meat board grades to emphasise their preference for a type of carcass.

The New Zealand livestock grading system is based on four factors:

  • Fat cover: measure taken around the rib region for beef and ovine.

  • Weight range: dressed carcass weight determines grade.

  • Muscle class: based on muscle shape of the hindquarters for cattle.

  • Defects: damage to the carcass. This is both disease and injury.

In addition to these factors animals are mouthed (by inspecting the incisor teeth) to confirm age and subsequently what livestock class they fall into for grading purposes.


Livestock Buyers

Contact your local Livestock Buyer for livestock collection and price information

Livestock Buyers

Head Buyer (All areas) 
Greg Parkes
Phone: 06 212 4414
Mobile: 021 276 9772
Fax: 06 322 9772

Manawatu - Rangitikei - Wanganui
Warwick Wilsher
Palmerston North
Phone: 06 323 2657
Mobile: 021 2460 090
Fax: 06 323 2645

Horowhenua - Wanganui - Taranaki
Richard Newton
Mobile: 021 196 1889


Westley Lord
Phone: 06 370 9462
Mobile: 021 242 9974
Fax: 06 370 9461

Hawkes Bay - East Coast 
Peter Scammell
Phone: 06 844 1150
Mobile: 021 2446 067
Fax: 06 844 7835






NAIT queries:

For all NAIT queries/complaints, please contact or 04-472 7987 Ext 764

C.R. Grace Limited 

Christopher Grace
Phone: 06 322 8334
Mobile: 021 420 253
Fax: 06 322 8380

Office Manager
Ide McManaway
PO Box 67, Hunterville
Phone: 06 322 8242
or 06 322 8383
Mobile: 021 222 8383


Vendor Declaration

For those farmers who wish to sell to Taylor Preston, we require a completed Vendor Declaration Form

Get the Vendor Declaration Form


How do I send this form to Taylor Preston?

Because we require a signature, we can't accept online submissions for this form. You may download our Vendor Declaration Form in Adobe PDF format from the link above. Print it out, fill in it, and then fax it back to us at 04 471 1319, or email a scan to

The original signed ASD must accompany the animals.

If you don't have a copy of Adobe's Acrobat Reader, and you can't read the PDF file, you may download the application for free by clicking on the Get Acrobat Reader button below.


adobe reader