FG BUY&SELL        FARMERS WEATHER       ARABLE FARMING        DAIRY FARMER      FARMERS GUARDIAN        AGRIMONEY        OUR EVENTS        MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS        BLOGS        MORE FROM US

You are viewing 1 of your 2 free articles

You’ll need to join us by becoming a member to gain more access.
Already a Member?

Login Join us now

John Henderson and Tony Shepherd: New finished cattle specs cause consternation

Insights

Because of lambing Tony and I had not met for a few weeks, so we had a grand catch-up the other day.

Twitter Facebook

The difference between the weather last year and this was as Siberia is to the Caribbean, and no-one is complaining.

 

Crops have been good and the only downside is there have never been as many on the automatic feeder. There must also be a concern there will be a good few about when it comes to selling them.

 

Grass growth is okay but a run of east winds, though good for us in that they normally mean dry weather, always seem to stop growth very quickly.

 

We’ve also sold a good number of cattle which Tony has finished, which is something of a new venture for us. Having taken some good advice and played around to find a suitable ration, he has been very successful in getting them to a good finished product, as is clear from the record sheets from the abattoir.

 

Not so good was the decrease in price per kilo. In only a couple of months we went from £3.62 to £3.58 to £3.52. Granted, this was ameliorated a little by higher kill weights but the trend is, nevertheless, rather disturbing. Even more so when store cattle seem to be no less expensive. Add into all this the fact the maths of breeding from suckler cows do not give the opportunity to create a decent turnover off a given acreage and the words “beggar” and “muddle” spring to mind.

 

Attention to detail of the entire process of buying, rearing and selling has become par for the course with Tony. This will be of even more importance since we received the revised pricing-grid schedule from one abattoir we deal with. Put simply, it increases quite considerably the penalties for not submitting cattle to their required minimum standard but, in fairness, also increases the prices above them. How very different to the days when I was chided by a man from the steel world who was becoming interested in farming. He coined the then law of agricultural marketing: “We’ve produced it so some beggar better buy it”.

 

Judging by the number of people asking to come and look around I’m pleased to say the interest in the concept of share-farming continues to be strong, particularly from the younger generations. So all we have to do is persuade some of my generation to have a look and see how they might give the young’uns a start.

 

Twitter Facebook
Rating (0 vote/s)
Post a Comment
To see comments and join in the conversation please log in.

More Insights

Getting sand bedding right

Sand is only one option available for bedding dairy cubicles, posing its own challenges and benefits. Laura Bowyer visited Richard Chewter at a quarry in Hampshire.

Aphids prove a writer's muse

Juggling fruit with fiction has been a quite a journey for Kathryn Evans whose talent and persistence has seen her name catapult way beyond the farmgate. Sue Scott finds out more.

Making better use of grass and improving fertility are keys to survival

Ireland’s dairy industry has made substantial improvement in on-farm performance and national output over the past 10 years. Ann Hardy reports from the Ireland Genetics UK Dairy Conference. 

Driving calf growth

Since attending a series of AHDB Dairy Calf to Calving events, Andrew Wallis and Tony White have implemented a number of changes. Farmers Guardian reports.

'Don't take knock-backs personally'

The Scottish Association of Young Farmers Clubs (SAYFC) hosted their third annual Agri and Rural Conference last weekend in Aberdeenshire. Striving for excellence was at the heart of discussion and members were offered advice and inspiration to make it happen. Farmers Guardian reports.
FG Insight and FGInsight.com are trademarks of Briefing Media Ltd.
Farmers Guardian and FarmersGuardian.com are trademarks of Farmers Guardian Ltd, a subsidiary of Briefing Media Ltd.
All material published on FGInsight.com and FarmersGuardian.com is copyrighted © 2016 by Briefing Media Limited. All rights reserved.
RSS news feeds