Third-generation Brahman breeder Ryan Olive has created a live export facility and feedlot in Central Queensland. He is the current Rabobank Young Beef Ambassador.

Story Annabelle Brayley   Photos Paula Heelan

Ryan Olive and his two sisters Jacque and Aimee were only little tackers in 1991 when their parents, Andrew and Roxanne, moved from Nullegai station in the Marlborough district of Central Queensland, to Raglan station, 65km south of Rockhampton. 

Destined for the land, Ryan wanted to give himself some options outside the family business, so learned to fly helicopters when he left school. He bought an R22, based himself at Raglan and launched a contract-mustering business. 

In 2014, Ryan, his father and two of his uncles were talking to a couple of agents at the Ponderosa Bull Sale in Katherine, NT, when one of the agents floated the idea that Raglan might be an ideal location for an export facility, due to its close proximity to Port Alma. Initially, Ryan wasn’t overly interested, but a couple of months later he bought two books that changed his philosophy. The first was Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, the other The Warren Buffett Way. “Those books really intrigued me and changed my direction moving forward,” Ryan says. “If I’d not read them, I might not have pushed through the challenges we faced building the export facility. They changed the way I think about things.”

Ryan focused on developing an export facility for producers in Central Queensland that ensures the highest standards of worker safety and animal welfare to reduce stress. Even though it felt like a very slow process, with his family’s full support, and advised by old friend and retired agent Peter Watkins, Ryan researched the possibilities and costings, managed the approvals and oversaw construction. The first export cattle went through the facility in 2018.

This story excerpt is from Issue #141

Outback Magazine: February/March 2022