Rolling Stones

Walterp

Member
Location
Pembrokeshire
Even a kind-hearted soul like me gets tired, eventually, of hearing people like dairyman John Houseman from Harrogate (reported in FG 17.08.18) looking forward to trading conditions getting tougher so's he can expand at someone else's expense.

I guess it's true what they say - farmers, like sheep, are each other's worst enemy.

"He who digs a pit will fall into it,
and whoever rolls a stone, it will come back on him."
(Proverbs 26:27)

Life is not a zero sum game: joining co-operatives, trades unions or pan-European federations can make sense, maximising everyone's opportunities.

The opposite is also true - when UK agriculture went through prolonged periods of low or negative returns it was the long-established farmers with paid-for farms, capital reserves, and family labour that struggled through (whilst, as The Duck has observed elsewhere, getting poorer every year that they endured). While aspirants like Mr Houseman went bust.

So it is time, in my opinion, that people like Mr Houseman learnt that life is a two-way street - if he wishes that inconveniently-established farmers would get out of his way and go bust, I hope that he goes bust in learning that life, and agriculture, doesn't work that way.
 

Clever Dic

Member
Location
Melton
The trouble is @Walterp humans are hard wired to compete . Take the human penis it has an unusually large head/helmet, it has developed this way so as in the act of copulation it will suck out the seed of the previous occupant.
Therefore as can be seen whilst pan european political blocks ,trade unions and all mankind working together for the common good are in theory all excellent ,the human condition likes to strive to be first,to be bigger and more succesful and it is that spirit that has taken humans to the moon.
 

Billboy1

Member
The trouble is @Walterp humans are hard wired to compete . Take the human penis it has an unusually large head/helmet, it has developed this way so as in the act of copulation it will suck out the seed of the previous occupant.
Therefore as can be seen whilst pan european political blocks ,trade unions and all mankind working together for the common good are in theory all excellent ,the human condition likes to strive to be first,to be bigger and more succesful and it is that spirit that has taken humans to the moon.

Christ alive ! Everyday is a school day [emoji23]
 
Competitive tr ading is the essence of business for the majority of people and the ability to stand hard times has always been relative to the level of reserves built into that business when times are good.These reserves may be in many forms cash,, land ,,shares in companies outside agriculture,, etc The trick appears to be the ability to hive off the trading business from the major capital reserves ie the land through the use of Ltd lliability, this avenue is adopted by most thinking sound farmers, just a fact of life, that is to be stated when considering the situation, and although maybe slightly jaundiced the statement that a farmers worst enemy is another farmer could b interpreted as survival of those who are well breeched through birth or business acumen.
 

linga

Member
Location
Ceredigion
[QUOTE="Walterp, post: 5428426, member: 321"]Even a kind-hearted soul like me gets tired, eventually, of hearing people like dairyman John Houseman from Harrogate (reported in FG 17.08.18) looking forward to trading conditions getting tougher so's he can expand at someone else's expense.

I guess it's true what they say - farmers, like sheep, are each other's worst enemy.

"He who digs a pit will fall into it,
and whoever rolls a stone, it will come back on him."
(Proverbs 26:27)

Life is not a zero sum game: joining co-operatives, trades unions or pan-European federations can make sense, maximising everyone's opportunities.

The opposite is also true - when UK agriculture went through prolonged periods of low or negative returns it was the long-established farmers with paid-for farms, capital reserves, and family labour that struggled through (whilst, as The Duck has observed elsewhere, getting poorer every year that they endured). While aspirants like Mr Houseman went bust.

So it is time, in my opinion, that people like Mr Houseman learnt that life is a two-way street - if he wishes that inconveniently-established farmers would get out of his way and go bust, I hope that he goes bust in learning that life, and agriculture, doesn't work that way.[/QUOTE]

Didnt you expand your legal practice at the expense of your ex employer ?
Yes, of course, he was behind the times and unable to compete in the current world but is this not the same as Mr Houseman who might just be taking advantage of prevailing conditions
 

Nearly

Member
Location
North of York
Knowing of Mr Houseman a little, they have invested and expanded and are fully committed to the next generation of cheap labour. ;)

For the new green field units to thrive it needs a lot of the smaller and medium sized producers to fall by the wayside.
It's part of their business plan - no-one want a surplus of milk.

I went to a farm business management weekend 22 years ago and the Barclays / Andersons / Reaseheath mantra was 'Get on or get out'. I looked around for a year or two and decided we were better of not spending £500k on a new 300 cow dairy unit and £500k on quota on 150 acres upland farm.
We got out.

Good luck to them.
 
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roscoe erf

Member
Livestock Farmer
its been the mantra for some years go big or go home you either stay small and have a niche or go so large that your costs are minimal (not my idea of a sustainable business) don't think there is much middle ground left these days but thats what all the so called experts advisors etc have been ramming into us for the last 1/4 of a century a buzz word that always gets my back up economies of scale and others
 

Goweresque

Member
Location
North Wilts
The man who will succeed in life is the man who walks to the table and doesn't put more on his plate than he can possibly eat

If thats a metaphor for not being greedy, then the world would be a lot worse off without greedy people.

In economics there is a thing called the Consumer Surplus. Its basically the benefit to the consumer that he derives from the transaction of a purchase of goods or services, above the purchase price. After all, no-one buys something unless they consider that its worth more to them than the money they have parted with, thats the whole basis of free trade - each person gains from the transaction. I buy an icecream from a van on a hot day for far more than I could have one at home from the freezer because I value an icecream at that very point in time far higher than I do one when I get home. That icecream trader has created a consumer surplus, without which I would be worse off - if he didn't exist I'd be without an icecream on a hot day when I wanted one.

Ergo it follows that if a business is successful, ie is creating a lot of consumer surplus because the goods or service it offers are very popular and in demand, then if the owner of that business gets to a certain point of wealth and says 'Thats enough for me chaps, I'm away to spend my pile of money' then the consumer actually loses out from his stopping trading. I've actually had a practical demonstration of this earlier this year - I decided to downsize my hay making operation and had to tell some customers I couldn't supply them this coming winter. And they were gratifyingly sorry to hear it. Their consumer surplus from trading with me was such that when I stopped they lost out too.

So basically a businessman can never be too greedy, if his wealth is created by people freely trading with him, because every single one of his customers is getting a consumer surplus. If Google closed down tomorrow we would all be worse off. Ditto Amazon. Ditto Facebook etc etc (not personally I can't stand FB, but hundreds of millions live by it).

So Derek, feel free to create the worlds first multinational hay and straw trading corporation and make your billion safe in the knowledge it is morally clean money, because if you did you'd have created many more billions of consumer surplus for all your customers along the way.

I'll end with a Walt style quote:

There are few ways in which a man can be more innocently employed than in getting money. Samuel Johnson
 

NI agri-food stakeholder groups discuss climate change bill with committee

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Written by Richard Halleron from Agriland

The Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) recently submitted oral evidence to members of the Stormont Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (AERA) committee on the content and potential impact of the Northern Ireland Climate Change Bill (No.2).

This draft legislation was recently introduced to the Northern Ireland Assembly by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) in conjunction with agriculture minister, Edwin Poots.

“We were accompanied by representatives from a wide range of food industry bodies, including the Northern Ireland Meat Exporters’ Association,the Ulster Farmers’ Union [UFU], Northern...
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