End of the Road for Small Livestock Farms?

Or you could look at it from the point of view of the tax payer. Why subsidies a livestyle choice of farming 50 acres, when clearly in this day and age it isn't a business that can make a profit !

The Miners had the same reality check in the 1980's.

Harsh but true unfortunately.

The mines have been mostly phoenixed as Retail Parks, Industrial estates or Distribution Centres around here where the 1984 miners strike started.
 

icanshootwell

Member
Location
Ross-on-wye
Everything is stacked against the small producer, small margins means a lot of business are not really viable unless they get sfp.

Add to the mix the red tractor nonsense, cost of membership and jumping through hoops, infrastructure of farms not up to rt standards, tb testing burden. Its a lot of hassle just for the "love of it". Do you blame the youngsters, fuc#ing off to do something else.
 
Location
southwest
Is there really much difference between people with outside jobs keeping a few horses or a few cattle on their "smallholding"?

In either case are they really trying to make a (highly taxed) profit, or just having a hobby that keeps the grass down?

And if one enterprise is subsidised, why shouldn't the other one get taxpayer support?

As for genuine full time farmers who struggle to make a living on a few acres, well small farms falling by the wayside has been going on since the year dot.........unfortunate I know, but that's "progress"

I also doubt that there are many full time farmers on here, who's current farm didn't used to be two or more separate holdings. And it's not just taking on next door, judging by the number of references to the "off land" or "the other unit" that you see on TFF. Is it right to bemoan the loss of small farms while being happy to contribute to and benefit from that trend?

The farm I grew up on was less than 120 acres but had previously been 4 separate holdings until the early 1960's, the difference between then and now being that back then the smallholders were farming in their spare time to support the very low wage levels in rural areas rather than as an aside to highly paid urban jobs
 
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milkloss

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
East Sussex
No surprise that the smaller and environmentally beneficial 'oasis' type areas are being ignored. The money has always gone to the bigger farms on the right side of a line on a map and usually undoing the damage they'd done years ago in the race for more. I think it's time to let the big boys roll on their own and limit future payments to those that have already soaked the larger proportion of env and sub money in the past. Shift the money back to the smaller enclaves of real environmentally beneficial farms.
 

Wolds Beef

Member
Small Pedigree Suckler herds are also really struggling. More and more paperwork by societies for health and welfare. Showing to get your 'Name'. Showing is also getting to be a 'rich' man's sport as the costs rise and isolation is demanded for the animals. Societies that do not listen to ideas and will not spend money on 'PR' but like to fill there coffers. I enjoy my show social life but it comes at a heavy cost!!.
WB
 

farmerm

Member
Location
Shropshire
Be cause the skill of looking after live stock , or who wants to look after them is going .
the prime areas are going to be more intensive , veg boys will stick two fingers up to elms etc and plough right to dyke top
Average land will be back to grass etc , heavy land that’s good black grass growing land should be grass and move the stock further east . And am afraid the high ground 🤦‍♂️Trees and wild life park and import everything
Inflation at minute is the thing to watch

Cars up 12%!!

Was speaking to a couple of used car dealers over beers a few nights ago... they are having to spend the first hour every morning just re-ticketing cars on the forecourt!! 30 years of trading and they have never had to do anything like it. In one case that week they had to go out and add ÂŁ800 on the price of one motor. Its gone crazy.
 

hagar

Member
I sold my cows years ago , farming stronger than ever and loving it , was out at 5 rolling reseeds
If you want it you will do it

You've obviously got ground that you have an alternative.
Up here in the hills (1000ft asl) I've got black top ground which could possibly grow crop but trying ti get silage off past couple o summers has been fun enough, never mind larger contractors machinery trying to get an alternative crop off in backend.
 
Cars up 12%!!

Was speaking to a couple of used car dealers over beers a few nights ago... they are having to spend the first hour every morning just re-ticketing cars on the forecourt!! 30 years of trading and they have never had to do anything like it. In one case that week they had to go out and add ÂŁ800 on the price of one motor. Its gone crazy.

A Used car dealer "re-ticketing" existing stock is more an opportunity pricing scenario !

Big jump in vehicle costs was predictable for at least 12 months now - Brought forward some of our fleet purchases by 12 months last November and had no regrets...
 

kfpben

Member
Location
Mid Hampshire
Even basic technologies have made things far more efficient now though. We are able to handle bigger numbers of stock with ease.
Electric fencing
Mobile handling systems
Quads
Wormers
Cattle crushes etc etc have all made things an awful lot easier than our grandfathers would have experienced

Before reliable fly control I imagine shearing was done three times a summer for ewes, twice for lambs, with hand shears!
Keeping 100 ewes would have been a full time job.

The really small units are hobbies. No shame in that at all by the way- variety is the spice of life!
 

New report underlines need for joined-up action to protect rivers

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New report underlines need for joined-up action to protect rivers

Written by Defra Press Office

A wide river is in view in a valley in the background, a drystone wall is behind the river, and large, green trees are prominent in the scene.


The Rivers Trust has today launched its State of Our Rivers report aiming to allow the English public understand and explore the health of their rivers on a national and local scale.

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow and Environment Agency Director John Leyland attended the launch panel to discuss the ways in which the...
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