our history

Originally a carpenter, D’Arcy purchased his first butcher shop in 1960 in Atherton with his wife, Raylee, after trading in his Mareeba milk run business.

It was from these humble beginnings that D’Arcy went about quietly building his empire. D’Arcy then purchased a slaughter yard near Tolga in 1962—a cornerstone of his business empire to this day.

This proved to be a masterstroke when regulations surrounding slaughter yards were changed during the 1970s and D’Arcy had the foresight to obtain his abattoir licence. With so many slaughter yards across the region unwilling to upgrade, they eventually closed, leaving D’Arcy with one of the only abattoir licences in our region.

It was around this time that D’Arcy moved his family from the tablelands to Cairns, where he built his family’s flagship wholesale and retail stores at Manunda. D’Arcy started building up a loyal customer base and further expanded the business operations by purchasing a wholesale and bulk storage facility at Portsmith in Cairns.

Over the years, under the guidance of D’Arcy, the family purchased three cattle stations covering 1.5 million acres near Coen in Cape York to help service his abattoir and ultimately his stores.

Byrnes Meats is now a third-generation family business, with D’Arcy’s’ son Victor Byrnes and now Victors’ son Cailan Byrnes stepping into the business. Supported by a loyal cohort of staff, Byrnes Meats is proud to be able to supply North Queensland with high quality, tender and tasty red meat.