Living under a cloud

Rural accountants Old Mill have revealed that some of their clients in the south west lost 11p / litre last year and they warn things could get worse following recent milk price cuts. The average cost of production amongst farming clients was 35.04p / litre in 2011/12. Without single farm payment, Old Mill say that…

Mobile milking parlour

ITV West news recently featured an unusual dairy farming enterprise, in which the cows are milked through a mobile milking parlour. The parlour, which has been put together by two enterprising guys in Dorset, is moved around the fields with the cows. At a time when food production is becoming an increasingly complex business, it…

Simple messages

Please take a look at the short video of cows going out to grass on our farm this spring. We don’t often have the opportunity to get in front of the public and explain how we manage our cows. Short films such as this can help to convey simple messages about what we do and…

A Farming Fairytale

DairyCo’s Farmer Intentions Survey for 2012 shows British dairy farmers giving a vote of confidence for the medium to long term outlook for both the industry and their own farm businesses. 36% of farmers in Britain said they intend to expand milk production over the next two years, whilst the number intending to leave the…

Seasons & Reasons

After having let our cows out to graze exactly a month ago, we have had to bring some of them back indoors today. In an attempt to address the impending drought, Mother Nature has decided to send rain by the bucket full and our heavy clay soils are struggling to drain themselves between the storms.…

First Free Range Dairy Meeting

Moving milk into a new field in 2012 Come along and be part of Free Range Dairy Meeting date and time: 22nd March 7.30pm Venue: Duchy College, Stoke Climsland, Callington, Cornwall PL17 8PB For more information: Refreshments will be provided.   Free Range dairy is a farmer-led initiative to reclaim the value of milk…

AHDB Education

The Agricultural & Horticultural Development Board (AHDB), in association with FACE (Farming and Countryside Education), recently commissioned research into current perceptions of children aged 7-15 on food, farming and the countryside, which has been used in the development of the AHDB Education Strategy 2012-17. The report produced by CHILDWISE in the summer of 2011, provides…

Survey now closed

A huge thank you to all those who returned survey forms or completed them online – a total of nearly 600 in all. We are overwhelmed by the response, particularly the number who have provided contact details and expressed an interest in hearing more about Free Range Dairy or attending a regional meeting. Although the…

What do cows eat?

I can’t find much information on the websites of major retailers about the farms they source their milk from. Most of what is available makes reference to high welfare standards but lacks any real detail. Similarly, when it comes to how the cows are managed and, in particular the contribution from grazing, there is little…

Healthy fats in milk

The French public research institute, Institut Nationale de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA) has produced some interesting findings on healthy fats in milk. Researchers in the INRA-INSERM-University Aix-Marseilles Joint Research Unit for Human Nutrition and Lipids: Bioavailability, Metabolism and Regulation, wished to compare the effects on the cardiovascular risk of two types of dairy fats: those…

Out-wintering cattle

I attended a very interesting meeting at Kinston Maurward College today, which was all about out-wintering cattle. The meeting was run by the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), based at The University of Aberystwyth. There were two excellent farmer presentations from Clyde Jones and Chris Barnes, who shared their experiences of out-wintering…