Arla

Location
cumbria
We are in Cornwall and calve ayr . The seasonality scheme came from milklink to try to curb production when prices were bad and it's been used ever since to curb spring production which is fine but when you ask around there isn't much of a flush at all.

As I understand it, the spring deductions are used to fund the autumn "bonus". An ayr producer should be mostly unaffected.

I do agree the seasonality season is wonky though it only really rewards spring guys. Been trying to tell them since it's inception, trouble is my rep is an ayr and doesn't seem to get it. He just repeats my first sentence over and over🙈
 

Farmer Keith

Member
Location
North Cumbria
As I understand it, the spring deductions are used to fund the autumn "bonus". An ayr producer should be mostly unaffected.

I do agree the seasonality season is wonky though it only really rewards spring guys. Been trying to tell them since it's inception, trouble is my rep is an ayr and doesn't seem to get it. He just repeats my first sentence over and over🙈
I was in the same boat here but gave up on them and put 50 spring calvers on in the end, it’s worked well although the dream of being a single block went with it.

As far as I’m aware the spring deductions fund the autumn payments and the volume bonus, hence why there’s never the “carrot” there should be in the autumn. It really irks me that they take money off guys spring calving 120 cows and give it back to guys milking 1000, just seems so wrong.
 
As I understand it, the spring deductions are used to fund the autumn "bonus". An ayr producer should be mostly unaffected.

I do agree the seasonality season is wonky though it only really rewards spring guys. Been trying to tell them since it's inception, trouble is my rep is an ayr and doesn't seem to get it. He just repeats my first sentence over and over🙈
Funnily enough our local rep who was running a large SBC now runs an ABC group too !so that explains a lot 🤔
The SPC brigade will be mightily annoyed if the spot price stays above their B price mind 😫
 

easy farming

Member
Livestock Farmer
Does anyone this is the year to drop the seasonality scheme ? As this year is going to be so expensive with all costs rising .. just my thoughts 🤐
I don't believe that there will be any change to seasonality this year as they have to give a years notice. I know a lot of effort has gone into trying to come up with a different system but I doubt it will change before 2023 at the earliest. Some AYR people dry to avoid feeding calves over Christmas and stop calving for part of December pushing those cows into January, a lot of high input farmers lose money wholesale in the Spring on their seasonal litres, the Spring calvers carry on regardless and a number of the Autumn guys have taken to taking a month off in the Summer by drying off totally causing a deeper trough. To try and balance it all is complicated to say the least.
 
I guess it depends what the bigger issue is, is it the spring peak or the summer trough?

We send a fair bit of milk at -9ppl through spring and I suspect Arla can make a good margin on this. Paying more for milk through autumn and winter will just encourage more autumn calving and deepen the summer trough.

What has changed this year is that seasonality is a far smaller proportion of the milk price. A 14ppl price swing between June and August is pretty huge on a sub 20p milk price but at nearly 40 it's far less significant.
 
Last edited:

nonemouse

Member
Location
North yorks
Who's sat through the online meeting for 360?
Don't think we'll be signing up as 0.94 pence per litre doesn't add up on our small amount
My thoughts too, ( plus it’s likely to be nearer 0.8p after scale back). Even though we already meet most of the requirements of the scheme, don’t think it worth the hassle for my few cows. Might be different if we produced a few million ltrs.
 

rusty

Member
I watched the one last night. I am already on a 360 contract and was watching in my capacity as a district representative.
My main costs of joining were moving from 6 weekly to monthly milk recording and having the vet to mobility score every quarter. We had to fit extra cow brushes but just used the fixed brush head type to the wall which were £75 each. CCTV system was around £1000 but can now check the calving yard from my phone or IPad .
The annual vet visit from the auditors is really useful and they are there to help you achieve better health outcomes rather than knock you, it’s not like a Red Tractor inspection!
It won’t be for everyone but it’s defiantly worth considering.
 

bar718

Member
Like @rusty we were one of the farmers in the first wave to be offered 360 for the Morrisons contract. It is worth joining as working with the Map of Ag vet team has brought an expert set of eyes onto our farm that we wouldn’t of otherwise had the chance to have an in-depth one to one with on the various points on our farm that were our weaknesses. This definitely changed the way we approach the day to day jobs on our farm and actually improved the way we farm. Saying that it is not without its problems for us on our farm but that shows that the standards are stringent but working with our vet and the map of ag team is making it so that those challenges we face are not impossible to solve.
 
You Arla guys, can't you push them to ditch any need for red tractor and just stand by their own farm/dairy assurance scheme? Come on, a lot of you are surely shareholders so it is ,in effect, your business and they should listen to you as well?

If you lot could walk away from RT it would set a monumental snowball rolling....

I'm not saying you are all going to ask to farm in unrestricted bliss, but by the sounds of it you will still have:

-Arlas own assurance scheme (itself no cakewalk I am sure)

-Trading standards requirements

-Food hygiene/safety requirements

You do not need RT to farm, the three above are far more meaningful.
 
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Col555

Member
Location
Cumbria
We’ve been on the 360 for nearly 3years, and honestly thinking of abandoning it. Getting sick of having to meet targets based on percentages and averages, be it age at first calving, cow or calf mortality, bactoscan etc with no tolerance for pure bad luck or an understanding of how averages work and how you reach an average!
We’ve had a recent run of bad luck with calvings, and on a sub 100 cow herd you soon rack up the mortality %age into the non conformance box. It’s seems wrong that when I pull or find a dead calf which is bad enough… my first thought is FFS arla are going to be at me for this😕

My latest rant is at Map of Ag… we’re required to send a photo of mobility scoring sheet, but we’ve also to fill in the boxes with the details from the because they can’t be arsed to open the attached photo and get the info themselves😡

The 360 requirements now are miles away from what we signed up to 3 yrs ago with no ‘cost compensation’ the extra work involved and they always throw more at us to do. Yes it maybe seems a small extra bit of form filling at the time, but it all adds up to taking more time than you realise.

New this month is everyone has to take a 3hr online Human Resources Training course with a test to pass afterwards. As a family farm we don’t employ anyone, so why would we do that?

Since we joined, the extra work from the initial form filling includes
Entering extra Monthly records for
Milk fever cases
Held placentas
LDA’s
Downer cows
Dairy feed usage
Dairy blend
Rearer feed
Weaning feed
Milk replacer
6 way breakdown of calf medical treatments
Cull cow declaration

We also have to submit proof of johnes, bvd testing etc
Gone from Annual to quarterly mobility scoring
gone from Johnes 30 cow screen to whole herd testing.
now we have this Human Resources course to contend with.

And don’t get me started on all the medicines we can’t use….

Where do I sign…..😂
 
Location
cumbria
I did wonder when they think smaller herds are supposed to find the time.
Red Tractor,
Arla garden
Arla garden+
Climate check
Now 360 on top🙈
Not to mention all the other agencies that want to come round for a day out😬

During calving/service my day can be up and around 14hrs. Some vet or whatever landing up to tell me I'm doing it wrong would be interesting to say the least.🤣

Going by the presentation, they did appear to be looking at their kpi's in isolation. Which I tell folk you can not do.
 

O'Reilly

Member
I did wonder when they think smaller herds are supposed to find the time.
Red Tractor,
Arla garden
Arla garden+
Climate check
Now 360 on top🙈
Not to mention all the other agencies that want to come round for a day out😬

During calving/service my day can be up and around 14hrs. Some vet or whatever landing up to tell me I'm doing it wrong would be interesting to say the least.🤣

Going by the presentation, they did appear to be looking at their kpi's in isolation. Which I tell folk you can not do.
I've been thinking this for a while. Do they want to know every time I have a p!ss? I do get that they are getting higher prices on the back of it all, but I do feel drowned in assesments at times.
 

early riser

Member
Location
Up North
My thoughts too, ( plus it’s likely to be nearer 0.8p after scale back). Even though we already meet most of the requirements of the scheme, don’t think it worth the hassle for my few cows. Might be different if we produced a few million ltrs.

What annoyed me was that they made a big thing of how the new standard goes above and beyond the current 360 standard (in requiring cows to graze), but yet the cost compensation is the same.

Contrary to popular belief, grazing cows properly actually involves significant time and effort, along with additional capital investment in tracks, water etc. For example my business has spent over £100k on concrete tracks alone to enable maximum grazing

If grazing is so important for brand protection then either pay a premium for it or pay the 360 guys that don’t graze a lower premium
 

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