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Young farmer focus: Jennifer Jones - 'Simple changes can bring big benefits'

Jennifer Jones, 26, works as a vet in the Scottish Borders and lives in Peebles. 

Vet

 

With lambing and calving just around the corner, perhaps now is the time to review your management procedures such as hygiene, colostrum and antibiotic use.

 

Some simple, low cost changes, such as improving cleanliness of pens, equipment and feeders, prompt navel disinfection and quality colostrum in sufficient quantity quickly enough (50ml/kg in first few hours for lambs,10 per cent of body weight in first six hours for calves) will have a massive effect on neonatal survival and future health.

 

Antibiotic use is always under scrutiny and prophylactic use of products, such as oral antibiotics, really cannot be recommended for the majority anymore.

 

For singles and twins born early in the lambing period with good hygiene and adequate colostrum, intake oral antibiotics are not necessary.

 

Triplets and lambs born later in lambing can be given oral antibiotics as there is greater chance of poor passive transfer and exposure to build of of bacteria in the environment.

 

SAYFC

 

With news over the past few weeks of more shows in 2021 being postponed, I am sure all young farmers countrywide are feeling disheartened about missing out on yet another year of shows, dances and beer tents.

 

However, we managed to adapt last year and once the light nights are here with lambing and calving past I am sure it will not seem as bad.


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Through SAYFC Agri and Rural Affairs, a very successful panel evening was held a few weeks ago, titled Covid-19 – an opportunity for Scottish Agriculture.

 

This was a very interesting and hugely positive talk, with speakers from QMS, a butchers, tourism and even from Australia.

 

Over the last year there has been an increase in red meat sales, with more using their local butchers or farm shop.

 

This has been fantastic and hopefully the trend will continue, with consumers realising that sustainable and local really is the best way forward.

 

QMS also released a new television advert, along with some infographics to help dispel some of the myths surrounding UK agriculture.

 

Especially now we have left the EU, it is vital we all play a part in continuing promoting our fantastic industry to consumers, so that they will always choose British meat and dairy for its sustainability, transparency and traceability.

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