Created by GOV.UK RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 3:32 PM

    Natural England Chair visits Countryside Stewardship Farm

    Written by Defra Press Office

    Today (Friday 12 July) Tony Juniper, Chair of Natural England, visited EJ Barker and Sons farm in Suffolk.

    From left to right: Brian Barker, Tony Juniper, Patrick Barker and David Barker

    The farm is a working arable business focused primarily on producing high quality arable crops. The family-owned farming partnership is in a Higher Tier Countryside Stewardship (CS) agreement, having previously been in a Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) agreement.

    On a tour of the farm, Brian and Patrick Barker demonstrated how the farm provides habitats for wildlife all year round, through species-rich grassland, pollen and nectar plots as well as other measures such as winter bird feeding options. Since being in stewardship schemes, the Barkers have recorded increases in wildlife on their farm, including barn owls, turtle doves and predatory birds including kestrels.

    Species-rich grassland

    Countryside Stewardship is an important income stream for land managers such as the Barkers, and those who sign up for a new agreement to start in 2020 will be well-placed tin the future, as payment for environmental benefits and...
  2. News
    Created by News
    Jul 12, 2019 at 3:17 PM
  3. Agriland RSS
    Created by Agriland RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 2:12 PM

    Written by Rachel Martin

    A prolonged three-year low in the beef price is seriously impacting the incomes of farms and crofters across the country, warns NFU Scotland.

    As a result, the union, which represents more than 8,500 farmers and crofters in Scotland, is stepping up action over the coming weeks. This will include a Back Scotch Beef campaign to encourage more people to support Scottish beef farmers and crofters.

    The union will also hold a nationwide stakeholders summit in the next month to discuss the serious situation the industry finds itself in and try to produce long term solutions.

    At present, a number of beef producers are losing more than £200 a head on their cattle, presenting an unsustainable situation on-farm, which NFU Scotland is adamant cannot continue.

    As part of its shelf watch activity, which has previously prompted action by retailers, the union is currently carrying out a beef burger shelf watch.

    The aim of this is to establish which of the nation’s retailers are supporting Scottish beef farmers and crofters during challenging economic times and at the height of the summer. Commentators are concerned the wholesale and catering sector isn’t doing enough to support home-produced beef.

    Meanwhile, NFU Scotland vice president Charlie Adam was in London this week stressing the importance of maintaining domestic production standards at an event with...
  4. AHDB Podcast RSS
    Created by AHDB Podcast RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 12:32 PM

    72: Breeding policies and the use of sexed semen

    Written by AHDB

    Steve West from our Knowledge Exchange team talks to dairy farmer Andrew Gilman about his breeding policies and goals, and how his herd has evolved over recent years.

    This episode is part of AHDB's #Breed4Better campaign and covers fertility, the role of genetics, heat detection and the use of sexed semen.

    Useful tools and resources:

    Continue reading more on the ADHB Website...
  5. Agriland RSS
    Created by Agriland RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 10:02 AM

    Written by Rachel Martin

    AHDB has called for academic institutions to apply for a fund of almost £750,000 to support up to 10 PhD studentships, to shape the long-term future of the industry.

    Starting in 2020, the studentships will deliver the next generation of experts and develop science with practical benefits across agriculture and horticulture.

    The 10 studentships will focus on the core research priorities identified by AHDB, which include integrated pest management, data, genetics, environment, animal health and welfare and business.

    Dr. Bill Parker, AHDB director of research, said: “We have coordinated our research priorities between sectors, and this call for new scientific talent acknowledges that the landscape we work within is rapidly changing.

    “We also have a focus on changing industry behaviour, whether that is increasing adoption of integrated pest management, utilising data and technology or improving labour management.”

    The invitation is open to all UK universities, colleges and research institutes.

    Organisations will be expected to demonstrate a record of excellence in the specific area of research as well as providing high-quality and well-managed research degree programmes.

    Similar to last year, AHDB is collaborating with the AgriFood Charities Partnership (AFCP) to co-fund a PhD studentship in a topic relevant to both either ammonia and/or...
  6. Fruit Focus News
    Created by Fruit Focus News
    Jul 12, 2019 at 9:16 AM

    What is happening at The WET Centre for 2019?

    The WET Centre at NIAB EMR has become a showpiece at Fruit Focus, bringing together leading industry technologies and 20 years of cutting-edge R&D. For growers, precision irrigation is fast becoming a ‘when’ not ‘if’ issue as legislation will restrict future water abstraction. Thankfully, using precision technologies growers are able to expand growing areas, increase marketable yields by reducing waste, assure shelf-life and reduce inputs, including water and fertilisers.

    After two seasons of growing ‘MallingTM Centenary’ the new industry-standard strawberry, the WET Centre has been planted with ‘MallingTM Champion’ – a disease resistant, high quality ever-bearer strawberry from the East Malling Strawberry Breeding Club which is set to see its commercial launch at Fruit Focus on 17 July. The performance of the rain water harvesting system and of a powdery mildew prediction model will also discussed on the day.

    Visitors to Fruit Focus 2019 will also witness the progress being made towards the establishment of WET Centre Phase Two – raspberries. With this high-value crop increasing in area and production in the UK, supported by exciting new varieties from the East Malling Rubus Breeding Consortium, the need for precision irrigation technologies and tools is paramount. Join the WET Centre tours at Fruit Focus and hear more about our work on the precision growing of soft fruit.

    Register for Tickets...
  7. Farm Business RSS
    Created by Farm Business RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 8:52 AM

    Written by John Swire

    Speaking at Anpario plc, the international producer and distributor of natural feed additives, AGM, chief executive Richard Edwards said: “We expect the farming crisis in China, due to African Swine Fever, to alleviate as the year progresses and, with pig prices now at record high levels, Chinese farmers are beginning to restock. We expect other regions such as Latin America to benefit by satisfying the production shortfalls in China.”

    Focussing on Anpario Direct, the Company’s new online platform recently launched for the UK market targeting smaller farm enterprises and niche segments such as equine and game birds, Mr Edwards said, “It is pleasing to report that we have already received our first sales and the focus now is to drive website traffic through innovative direct and online marketing techniques, supported by our existing account management teams.”

    Commenting on Anpario’s financial position Mr Edwards said, “Our strong balance sheet is reflected in the current cash balance of over £13m and makes the Company well placed to invest if the short term industry problems offer opportunities for acquisitions or provide a platform from which to continue to make profitable progress.”

    Get Our E-Newsletter - breaking news to your in-box twice a week
    See e-newsletter example
  8. Agriland RSS
    Created by Agriland RSS
    Jul 12, 2019 at 5:22 AM

    Written by Rachel Martin

    With Enzootic Abortion of Ewes (EAE) responsible for more than a third of abortion cases in sheep every year, a new campaign has been launched to encourage farmers to vaccinate in advance of tupping to prevent both unnecessary lamb losses and inappropriate use of antibiotics.

    Independent sheep veterinary consultant Dr. Fiona Lovatt, who leads the cross-industry Sheep Antibiotic Guardian Group, says farmers often don’t realise that EAE is responsible for over 35% of all abortion diagnoses, the largest cause by far.

    Despite this, only one million of the 3.5 million replacement ewes in the national flock each year are vaccinated against EAE.

    “Any sheep farmer that either buys in ewes for replacements or has close neighbours that also lamb sheep, risks bringing enzootic abortion into their flock,” explained Dr. Lovatt.

    Once the disease infects an unvaccinated flock, some ewes are ‘programmed’ to abort at their next lambing, leaving no choice but to put remedial measures in place – usually including both vaccination and antibiotic treatment.

    This means EAE is a disease that, once in a flock, carries high costs both financially and emotionally in terms of lamb losses and farmer stress.

    “It is important that flocks receive appropriate vaccination at least four weeks before ewes go to the ram and avoid the inappropriate use of...
  9. The Guardian RSS
    Created by The Guardian RSS
    Jul 11, 2019 at 6:32 PM

    Meat infected by African swine fever found in UK for first time

    Written by Kate Hodal

    Highly contagious virus can live for months in processed meat and would have ‘devastating implications’ if passed to live pigs

    African swine fever has been picked up in meat seized by port authorities in Northern Ireland, the first time the ASF virus has been detected in the UK.

    Officials confiscated more than 300kg of illegal meat and dairy products from airport passengers’ luggage in June. Samples tested by the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute in Belfast confirmed traces of the virus, which is highly contagious and can survive for several months in processed meat.

    Continue reading...

    Since you’re here …

    … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading the Guardian than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. The Guardian’s...
  10. Agriland RSS
    Created by Agriland RSS
    Jul 11, 2019 at 6:12 PM

    Written by Rachel Martin

    The family of a four-year-old boy tragically killed in a farm accident Lancashire have said tractors and animals were his biggest passion.

    Police were called at around 11:15am on Monday (July 8) following a report that a young boy had been seriously injured at a farm in Newchurch-in-Pendle.

    The boy suffered a serious head injury following a collision with a small telehandler-type vehicle. Emergency services attended; however, he was pronounced dead at the scene.

    He can now be named as four-year-old Harry Lee who lived at the farm.

    Harry’s family said: “Harry was four years old and the light of our lives. He is a much-loved son, grandson, brother, cousin and uncle in his large extended family.

    He never failed to make friends and melt hearts wherever he went, with his cheeky smile and his laughter.

    “Harry was born and brought up on a farm and loved the outdoor lifestyle. His passion was tractors and animals. He could name every brand and type of tractor in the area by sight and loved to feed and look after the animals.

    “Harry has attended the same nursery for three years and he loved his teachers and his friends. Harry’s teacher admitted that everything she knows about farming and tractors had come from him and that even she could identify the different tractors and the trailers by sight.

    “Harry loved listening to music, and...