The on-going up hill battle that is agriculture.....

icanshootwell

Member
Location
Ross-on-wye
Looking at it now as someone born in the 90s, it seems when incentives were production based, surplus went to intervention, no supermarket monopoly, china wasnt a global player and a world population half of what it is now. What were the levels of imported food to the uk? Also diets were very different - spuds not rice.
And cancers were a lot lower, sprays and non stick pans was the future, was,t there a lengthy court case about that one!! dragged on over 10 years. Interesting film made about it, i think everybody should watch it, i think it,s called muddy waters.
 

farmerm

Member
Location
Shropshire
And cancers were a lot lower, sprays and non stick pans was the future, was,t there a lengthy court case about that one!! dragged on over 10 years. Interesting film made about it, i think everybody should watch it, i think it,s called muddy waters.
where cancer really lower or did a lot of folk just die of "natural causes"?
 

icanshootwell

Member
Location
Ross-on-wye
where cancer really lower or did a lot of folk just die of "natural causes"?
I have my own theory about it and I know man-made chemicals are stored in the body because you're body can't indentify them, small amounts you're probably get away with but every day exposure will effect you eventually. Companies like du pont were making a million every 3 day's, that gives them some power.
 

stewart

Member
Horticulture
Location
Bay of Plenty NZ
Fat to meat to bone ratio of average UK lamb chop comparted to Australia? Percentage of UK lamb kill presented for slaughter which is out of spec?

Work done on eating quality of UK beef compared to US beef? (US beef sires have genomic scores for shear testing and marbling scores)

Number of lambs weaned per ewe and kg of lamb weaned per ha NZ vs UK?

When was the last time UK wool clip covered cost of shearing? Any work done at industry level to improve fleece quality?

Ewe headage subsidy and variable premium were more important. Introduction of BPS and cross compliance resulted in many estates dispersing their sheep flocks because potential 5% subsidy penalty was more valuable.

Mules with pretty faces being worth more.

The estate shepherd quoted here previously "it would cost £40k to top all the parkland. As long as the sheep enterprise looses less than than per annum my job is secure"

Prevalence of performance recording UK vs Aus/NZ.

But don't take my word for it, at the most recent Sheep Breeders Roundtable renowned UK sheep consultant gave a presentation. One of the main messages was "like it or not, to date the UK sheep industry has been shaped by subsidy. Subsidies are being removed and the industry must change to adapt."
Do you really need to do all that work and research on the markets, surely you just produce something in the faint hope that there will be a buyer out there somewhere. ;)
 

Hilly

Member
Fat to meat to bone ratio of average UK lamb chop comparted to Australia? Percentage of UK lamb kill presented for slaughter which is out of spec?

Work done on eating quality of UK beef compared to US beef? (US beef sires have genomic scores for shear testing and marbling scores)

Number of lambs weaned per ewe and kg of lamb weaned per ha NZ vs UK?

When was the last time UK wool clip covered cost of shearing? Any work done at industry level to improve fleece quality?

Ewe headage subsidy and variable premium were more important. Introduction of BPS and cross compliance resulted in many estates dispersing their sheep flocks because potential 5% subsidy penalty was more valuable.

Mules with pretty faces being worth more.

The estate shepherd quoted here previously "it would cost £40k to top all the parkland. As long as the sheep enterprise looses less than than per annum my job is secure"

Prevalence of performance recording UK vs Aus/NZ.

But don't take my word for it, at the most recent Sheep Breeders Roundtable renowned UK sheep consultant gave a presentation. One of the main messages was "like it or not, to date the UK sheep industry has been shaped by subsidy. Subsidies are being removed and the industry must change to adapt."
And it will change and adapt to suit so I don’t see the issue ?
 
I’m likely going to get shot down here, but hey ho!!

I had two very interesting conversations last week.
One along the lines of this thread.

“I’ve got 500+ acres, it’s a millstone round my neck, can’t make it pay even with no mortgage or rent, rising costs, falling prices. Not made any money for several years, never get time off, can’t afford to employ anyone “

The second was with a customer I first met 25 years ago. He had just set out contract farming then. He’s worked hard and now has maybe a dozen clients, mostly arable but there’s a sheep enterprise in the mix too. We were having a general chat and I said to him “Go on then, I know you’ll tell me the truth, is there any money in the job?”.

He answered with an immediate “Oh Christ yeah!! I’ve never lost money, not once for any client. Even when we had to mow over 20% of (named farmer) acreage due to blackgrass infestation still made him a small profit”.

So go on, all tell me please, is there money being made where you are?

Don’t shoot the messenger please. It’s just I can’t see how the two could be so different. The two farmers are close to each other and know each other. I obviously haven’t told them each other’s business. They are on very similar ground and farm in similar ways, both quite progressive.

Is it just mindset?

I feel I ought to tell the owner occupier to call the contract farmer and have a chat!
 
Last edited:

stewart

Member
Horticulture
Location
Bay of Plenty NZ
I’m likely going to get shot down here, but hey ho!!

I had two very interesting conversations last week.
One along the lines of this thread.

“I’ve got 500+ acres, it’s a millstone round my neck, can’t make it pay even with no mortgage or rent, rising costs, falling prices. Not made any money for several years, never get time off, can’t afford to employ anyone “

The second was with a customer I first met 25 years ago. He had just set out contract farming then. He’s worked hard and now has maybe a dozen clients, mostly arable but there’s a sheep enterprise in the mix too. We were having a general chat and I said to him “Go on then, I know you’ll tell me the truth, is there any money in the job?”.

He answered with an immediate “Oh Christ yeah!! I’ve never lost money, not once for any client. Even when we had to mow over 20% of (named farmer) acreage due to blackgrass infestawe still made him a small profit”.

So go on, all tell me please, is there money being made where you are?

Don’t shoot the messenger please. It’s just I can’t see how the two could be so different. The two farmers are close to each other and know each other. I obviously haven’t told them each other’s business. They are on very similar ground and farm in similar ways, both quite progressive.

Is it just mindset?

I feel I ought to tell the owner occupier to call the contract farmer and have a chat!

As a generalisation those with high borrowings or rent to pay farm more cost effectively, debt is a great motivator.
 

puppet

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
sw scotland
Average life expectancy has risen from 72 in 1970 to around 82 today, I wonder how cancer rates compare? Is it that we are living longer or that they are better at detecting them now? Diet and lifestyle I think contribute.
Life expectancy of 50 you were dying of infections, at 70 it was heart attacks but now we get older and get cancer and if we survive that we get dementia. At 80 our immune systems cannot kill off the abnormal cells which mutate. Probably a lot more carcinogens 100 years ago.
They used to xray kids feet in the shoe shop to check the fitting.
 

puppet

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
sw scotland
Average life expectancy has risen from 72 in 1970 to around 82 today, I wonder how cancer rates compare? Is it that we are living longer or that they are better at detecting them now? Diet and lifestyle I think contribute.
Life expectancy of 50 you were dying of infections, at 70 it was heart attacks but now we get older and get cancer and if we survive that we get dementia. At 80 our immune systems cannot kill off the abnormal cells which mutate. Probably a lot more carcinogens 100 years ago.
They used to xray kids feet in the shoe shop to check the fitting.
 

hally

Member
Location
cumbria
I’m likely going to get shot down here, but hey ho!!

I had two very interesting conversations last week.
One along the lines of this thread.

“I’ve got 500+ acres, it’s a millstone round my neck, can’t make it pay even with no mortgage or rent, rising costs, falling prices. Not made any money for several years, never get time off, can’t afford to employ anyone “

The second was with a customer I first met 25 years ago. He had just set out contract farming then. He’s worked hard and now has maybe a dozen clients, mostly arable but there’s a sheep enterprise in the mix too. We were having a general chat and I said to him “Go on then, I know you’ll tell me the truth, is there any money in the job?”.

He answered with an immediate “Oh Christ yeah!! I’ve never lost money, not once for any client. Even when we had to mow over 20% of (named farmer) acreage due to blackgrass infestawe still made him a small profit”.

So go on, all tell me please, is there money being made where you are?

Don’t shoot the messenger please. It’s just I can’t see how the two could be so different. The two farmers are close to each other and know each other. I obviously haven’t told them each other’s business. They are on very similar ground and farm in similar ways, both quite progressive.

Is it just mindset?

I feel I ought to tell the owner occupier to call the contract farmer and have a chat!
Different peoples idea of making money can differ dramatically.
There is making money ( which is covering bills and drawings) and making real money
 

Flat 10

Member
Location
Fen Edge
I’m likely going to get shot down here, but hey ho!!

I had two very interesting conversations last week.
One along the lines of this thread.

“I’ve got 500+ acres, it’s a millstone round my neck, can’t make it pay even with no mortgage or rent, rising costs, falling prices. Not made any money for several years, never get time off, can’t afford to employ anyone “

The second was with a customer I first met 25 years ago. He had just set out contract farming then. He’s worked hard and now has maybe a dozen clients, mostly arable but there’s a sheep enterprise in the mix too. We were having a general chat and I said to him “Go on then, I know you’ll tell me the truth, is there any money in the job?”.

He answered with an immediate “Oh Christ yeah!! I’ve never lost money, not once for any client. Even when we had to mow over 20% of (named farmer) acreage due to blackgrass infestawe still made him a small profit”.

So go on, all tell me please, is there money being made where you are?

Don’t shoot the messenger please. It’s just I can’t see how the two could be so different. The two farmers are close to each other and know each other. I obviously haven’t told them each other’s business. They are on very similar ground and farm in similar ways, both quite progressive.

Is it just mindset?

I feel I ought to tell the owner occupier to call the contract farmer and have a chat!
If I had 500acres with no mortgage or rent I would make very good money with nice kit.
 
Different peoples idea of making money can differ dramatically.
There is making money ( which is covering bills and drawings) and making real money

I think the point I’m making is that for the whole of my life I’ve heard that farming makes no money from 90+% of the farmers I talk to.

It’s very rare for someone to say they’re doing well. At best some say along the lines of “We’ve had a half decent year but that’ll all be gone soon”

I’ve known for years all the doom can’t be true and that if everyone lost money every year like they say they do then they would have gone bust decades ago.
 

LIVE - DEFRA SFI Janet Hughes “ask me anything” 19:00-20:00 20th September (Today)

  • 17,186
  • 128
Hello, I’m Janet Hughes. I’m the Programme Director for the Future Farming and Countryside Programme in Defra – the programme that’s phasing out the Common Agricultural Policy and introducing new schemes and services for farmers.



Today (20 September) between 7pm-8pm, I and some of my colleagues will be answering your questions about our work including the Sustainable Farming Incentive, Farming in Protected Landscapes, and our test and trials.



We’ll try to answer at least 15 of your top voted questions, so please vote on the questions you’d most like me to answer.



You can read more about our Future Farming policy on our blog.



I’ve answered some of your questions previously: you can watch the videos on...
Top