Australian Wagyu Forum

The Ginjo Herd

Founded in 1998, the Ginjo Wagyu herd is believed to be unique in Japanese Black cattle breeding outside Japan for its application of rare fullblood genetics that enable the production of fullblood pedigrees equivalent to the mainstream of Japanese ‘home herd’ commercial production.

As an essential pre-requisite to success in the 12-year ‘Japanese equivalence’ project, Ginjo identified and recovered the remaining Tottori/Kedaka prefecture genetics surviving from the international foundation Japanese Black group, exported from Japan from the late 1980s through to about 2002.

Although always rare in the international herd, Tottori genetics have been either the first or second most important inputs to Japanese Black commercial production in Japan since the 1960s, the only comparable input being from Hyogo prefecture (Tajima).

Although two important ‘high Tottori/Kedaka’ bulls (Hirashigetayasu and Itomoritaka) were part of the overall export group from Japan; a larger reservoir of these genetics was identified in foundation females of the Westholme Japanese export herd, owned by AACo, and based at Surat, Queensland. This reservoir was tapped by Ginjo over a 12 year period to create the unique, core breeding group now owned by the Hancock family.

As an outcome of consistent contribution to Wagyu EBV development from about 2006-drop animals, Ginjo development was continuously informed by Wagyu BREEDPLAN, resulting in strong contemporary Index performance.


Japanese commercial beef market outcomes demonstrate that the balanced infusion of Tottori/Kedaka genetics (with Tajima) deliver outstanding Wagyu beef quality. In Australia, major producer advantages include more profitable growth traits, better maternal traits, increased calf size and vitality, with reduced morbidity.


Based originally in Tea Gardens and Gloucester, NSW, the Ginjo fullblood herd was developed over a 24 year period by Mike Buchanan. In early 2022, the Ginjo business and core breeding group, with genetics and related assets were acquired by Peter and Karen Hancock, of Roma, Queensland, as part of a Hancock Family Trust Wagyu herd expansion.