It is with deep sadness that the Australian Wagyu Association relays the news of the passing of Dr Simon Coates, of Sumo Wagyu.
First and foremost, Simon was a family man and the Association passes its deepest condolences to the family. The Australian Wagyu industry says goodbye to a well-respected pioneer. He will forever be recognised as a key figure in establishing the global Wagyu industry outside of Japan.
The co-founder and owner of Sumo Wagyu, Simon was a qualified veterinarian of more than 40 years’ experience, with a vast knowledge of Wagyu genetics and breeding. The Sumo herd is one of the first five AWA memberships that were recorded in 1994 and has been a market leader in Fullblood genetics since 1997.
As one of the early pioneers, Simon’s efforts were pivotal in the export of genetics to Australia. Simon was involved extensively with the importation of Wagyu genetics in the early 1990s.
This work enabled establishment of the fledgling F1 trade for live cattle exports to Japan and the subsequent development of the Fullblood breeding industry. It was Simon’s unique blend of character, scientific knowledge and passion for Wagyu that opened up the breed as an opportunity for many Australian and International breeders.
Simon was well known for his extensive field day activities, workshops and sales to promote Wagyu to Australian breeders. He was a wonderful supporter of Wagyu and a wealth of knowledge to all.
Simon’s efforts during the formative years of the Australian Wagyu Association are applauded by his peers. He is noted as being appointed as a councillor to the Association in 1993 and was the second president of the AWA between 1994-1997.
Simon was a champion of genetic evaluation and performance recording to support breeding decisions. He is world-famous in Wagyu circles for the development of the Sumo herd and for enabling the progress of the breed through his breeding and marketing of outstanding genetics.
As a measure of the scale of Simon’s impact on the global Wagyu community, within the AWA’s registers, Simon has registered more than 5,600 individuals, including 1,494 Fullblood dams and 173 Fullblood sires that have been used to breed more than 21,000 progeny in AWA member herds.
Simon was recognised in 2018 as an Honorary Life Member with the Australian Wagyu Association. Simon is noted by past presidents as a wonderful bloke, a thorough gentleman in business and a great support to the industry worldwide, earning enormous respect personally and through his business, Sumo Cattle Co.
In honouring Simon’s pivotal role in the development of the Australian Wagyu industry, the Association is proud to announce as part of the Wagyu Fellowship Program, the creation of:
The Dr Simon Coates Scholarship for Veterinary and Reproductive Science
The ongoing scholarship will be available to students who are studying veterinary science or researching reproduction and breeding related to Wagyu.
Through the Dr Simon Coates Scholarship for Veterinary and Reproductive Science, we can continue to recognise the great contributions of one of our founding members and honour his passion for the advancement of Wagyu.