Year: 2015

Farming community is called upon to help with Syrian refugee crisis

Farming community is called upon to help with Syrian refugee crisis

 

Millions of Syrian refugees have been displaced from their homes due to conflict, living in temporary camps with little shelter from the bitter winter which is fast approaching, however, the British farming community can help.

Many within the British rural community are starting to prepare for their own winter, buying warm new coats and burying the old ones to the back of workshops and wardrobes. However, a new project, Country Coats to Syria (CCtS), is calling upon those in the rural community to donate any old or unused coats to their cause.

CCtS are planning to organise collection points around the country over the Christmas period where people can deliver coats. These will then be passed on to established charity Syria Relief, where they will be shipped to Syria and the surrounding areas.

Two pilot schemes are being organised at Sedgemoor Auction Centre on the 21 November, and at The East of England Smithfield Festival, one of the country’s premier livestock shows, at the East of England Showground on the 26 and 27 November 2015.

Many in the rural community would be lost without their homes, which not only provide comfort and safety, but also their livelihood. Knowing the great loss the Syrian refugees have gone through, please donate any unwanted or under-used coats.

To find out where your nearest collection point is please visit: countrycoats2syria.org.uk

For more information please contact:

CCtS Sedgemoor: Richard Walton – richard.w@acre-events.com 07970 029825

 

CCtS Smithfield: George Bowyer – george.bowyer@thecountrysidecares.org 07767 318326

 

Smithfield Festival: William Haire – whaire@eastofengland.org.uk

 

Syria Relief: Benjamin Davies – b.davies@syriarelief.org.uk 0161 860 0163

Start up to show-winners in five years

Start up to show-winners in five years

 

Ivanhoe Livestock is a name known to many in the sheep industry, both for their show ring successes and for achieving high prices in local markets in the North of England.

However, the progress this flock has made in a very short time has to be admired. Andrew and James Bailey, coming together as a father and son team, from North Yorkshire, have, in fact, only been farming fully in their own right for five years. Yet in that very short time they have won national prizes in both pedigree and commercial show rings; and they command high prices for their pedigree and commercial crossbred breeding stock.

The Ivanhoe prefix is taken from the name of the family’s previous house at Leyburn. 5 years ago, as a family Andrew, Lyn, Joanne and James, secured the tenancy at Wyvill Grange, near Bedale and this is where they all have built up the sheep enterprise to what it is today.

Wyvill Grange totals 150 acres of grassland which is managed mostly on five-year ley rotations. The farm sits at a varied 200-700 feet above sea-level and the soil is free-draining, which has proved to be very compatible with efficient sheep production. Wyvill Grange also supports a small herd of 10 suckler cows and over winters  around 80 cattle for other farmers to gain full use of the shed space.

Expansion has been impressive. The family arrived at the farm with only 45 ewes to there name which were kept on small fields of rented land around Leyburn. They have now increased to a total of around 500 ewes. These consist of purebred Blue Texels, Beltex and Dutch Texels and crossbred females.

“Our aim is to produce quality stock that suit both the breeding market and the commercial market,” explains James. “All three breeds have their own merits for achieving this,” says James. “Personally, I favour the Beltex, which I believe is ideal for producing high quality lambs, with excellent carcases.”

Andrew differs in his preference, choosing the Blue Texel as his favourite, “I feel the Blue Texel adds size without sacrificing shape. It is finer-boned, compared with the ordinary white Texel and that makes it easier to lamb.” says Andrew. The Dutch Texels were introduced two years ago, to bring in fresh bloodlines, for use mainly on the hoggs to produce quality butchers lambs.”

Despite the difference in opinion on breeds, the Baileys are in total agreement when it comes to the benefits of exhibiting their animals at shows and events around the UK. “Shows give us an unique opportunity to display our end product,” explains James. “It’s where we can show our customers the quality of our stock.”

They also happen to thoroughly enjoy the process of showing animals and take immense pride in their sheep. They attend as many as time allows, and find the rewards have been significant for their business.

“It is very much a marketing tool for our business,” says Andrew. “A great advertising campaign for our flock, and every success adds value to our animals and our flock, and gives us a boost in confidence that we are doing something right.

A significant win in last year’s winter show season was at the East of England Smithfield Festival, when they were awarded overall champion in the carcase competition. They won with a Beltex cross Blue Texel wether lamb, which graded at E3L and killed out at 55%.

“We were thrilled with the result. It is always encouraging when the hard work begins to pay off,” he adds.

“Because of the investment each show demands in both time and money, we try to enter as many classes as possible,” James explains. “Typically we will take around 20 animals to each event  and enter approximately 10-12 classes.”

However, what should not be underestimated is the effort put in to get these animals to the standard required for show ring success.  An effective breeding policy, good nutrition, lambing time, strict health and welfare all play a role in making sure the animals are ready for the final preparations before the show ring.

“We are always focussed on what the customer wants. Butchers want a high meat to bone ratio,” explains James. “The combination of the three breeds we use produce this. It also produces quality animals for breeding stock and we currently sell around 30 breeding tups a year, mainly for commercial use.

“This year we lambed 100 commercial ewes in January. Following this, 80 Pedigree ewes and crossbreds lambed at the end of February. This was specifically to produce breeding tups and replacement gimmers. The remaining ewes and 100-120 hoggs are then lambed at the end of April. This is the general pattern we want to follow, however, we are looking to increase numbers to expand and gain the most out of the tenancy,” he adds.

“We find this pattern spreads the lambing workload, and allows us to manage the flock to the best of our ability,” he says. “It also allows us to sell lambs at Easter, commanding a higher price and utilise the grassland most effectively in the spring for the majority of the flock.

All the sheep are lambed indoors on loose straw, and moved into individual pens when lambed. The farm has various buildings, old and new, and all are used at peak time for lambing. Hygiene is a major factor in ensuring healthy animals, and lime is used extensively to minimise disease.

Weather dependant, most ewes and lambs are moved outside after a few days, after the Baileys have carried out necessary management systems including EID tagging and recording, docking, castration, treatment for orf and vitamin dose. Weighing of the early lambs is carried out from around eight weeks, to allow them to plan the optimum time for selling and weaning. Creep feed is introduced at this time to aid growth rate and meat development and then weaning is usually between 10 and 12 weeks old. “We have to be flexible on this, as grass growth varies year on year, and factors such as ewe condition and lamb growth have to be considered,” explains James.

“We sell the finished lambs at local markets from the end of March through to July, then start again in the autumn with us selecting lambs off grass if possible to help minimise production costs” adds James. “Obviously we hold some back for the winter shows, but we like them all to be sold by the end of the year, in preparation for lambing again in January. It works well for us, and we have kept more gimmer lambs back this year to allow for more expansion.”

One of the winter shows on our calendar is the 2015 East of England Smithfield, which is on the 26 to 27 November in Peterborough. “Smithfield is special,” says James. “It offers a certain prestige, it really is the best of the best. It also offers a chance to attend workshops and presentations, to learn the latest products and innovations in the sheep industry. It’s an exciting event and we are now making the final selections in preparation for the show. At this moment in time we wil be taking 12 pairs, of which most are Beltex and Blue Texel origins, alongside some extra breeds such as the Cheviot.

With such a rapid success in the show ring and at livestock markets around the UK,  combined with their positive attitude and work ethic, the Baileys are one to watch in the future of the sheep breeding industry, as a family that are focused on what the market demands and know how to achieve it.

 

Hi-Tech focus for East of England Smithfield Festival 2015  

Hi-Tech focus for East of England Smithfield Festival 2015  

 

The focus for this year’s East of England Smithfield Festival on the 26 and 27 November in Peterborough, is new technology and leading the way will be the inaugural live broadcast of the judging.

“This is such an exciting development for the show,” explains William Haire, East of England Smithfield Festival director. “Our new partnership with Melton Mowbray market has allowed us to introduce this new technology and allow anyone who is unable to attend, to still be involved.

“By simply going to the Melton Mowbray market website, and following the link anyone can watch the judging classes live from the show,” explains Mr Haire. “This makes the event, much more inclusive to all.”

Continuing this hi-tech theme, is the new StockTech area which aims to highlight new precision technology and innovative techniques on offer to the livestock sector.

“As an industry, it is important that we are open and receptive to new and improved methods of production, allowing us to increase efficiencies and protect the sustainability of our businesses,” explains Mr Haire.

Seminars will also be available to attendees, giving food for thought on a wide range of issues including red meat marketing, introducing beef and sheep enterprises to an arable business and contract-rearing options.  A help-desk area, with experts in a number of legislative and advisory capacities will also be on hand to answer individual enquiries.

“The show has evolved significantly this year, and I am thrilled with the support and encouragement we have received in developing the event,” says Mr Haire. “Entries are now closed, and I am delighted to report that we have many highly respected exhibitors from England, Wales and Scotland attending the event. We have also seen a substantial increase in trade stand exhibitors which reflects the confidence the industry has in the East of England Smithfield Festival and its credibility in the livestock sector.

“There will be something for everyone,” he concludes. “The new facilities here at the East of England Showground, together with the new technology and the quality of the exhibitors, will make for a truly exciting and  informative event.”

Please visit meltonmowbraymarket.co.uk for further details on the live broadcast for the East of England Smithfield Festival.

The Lincolnshire Technical Symposium- Soils & Cropping Systems

The Lincolnshire Technical Symposium- Soils & Cropping Systems

As a member of Innovation for Agriculture, we are pleased to let our members know that they can avail of discounted attendance at this exciting symposium taking place on the 19th of November at Lincoln Showground. Faced with a “yield plateau” and an uncontrollable blackgrass burden, farmers are seeking new ways to address their problems and rise to the challenge of improving their yields. It is now well recognised that soil organic matter has declined over recent decades and that drainage has been neglected on many farms for over a generation.

This symposium brings together speakers with expertise in soil organic matter, drainage and the use of cover crops within new cropping systems to address the challenges we face.

Speakers include:

David Gardner, of Innovation for Agriculture on Soil Biology

Rob Burtonshaw, of Farm Services Ltd, on developments in drainage

Jake Freestone, of Overbury Farms, on the merits of alternative cover and catch crops

Mark Hemmant, of Agrovista, on cover crops and cultivation systems to control blackgrass

David Miller, of Wheatsheaf Farming, on maximising the use of cover crops to improve soil fertility.

This event is being run in partnership by Innovation for Agriculture and Lincolnshire Agricultural Society.

Booking information can be found here

In the future we will be working more closely with IFA and hope to bring some events to our Showground here in Peterborough.

Further speakers announced for East of England Farming Conference

Further speakers announced for East of England Farming Conference

 

The East of England Agricultural Society are pleased to confirm a number of additional speakers that have joined an already impressive line-up for the East of England Farming Conference,taking place at the showground on the 3rd of December.

The already strong line-up of  speakers will be joined by Sir Peter Kendall- Chairman of AHDB, Guy Smith- NFU Vice President, Peter Simpson- CEO of Anglian Water, Susie Emmett of Green Shoots Productions and Andrea Manenti- CEO of Trelleborg Wheel Systems UK.

The new speakers complement an already impressive and varied bill, the highlight of of which is without question four inspirational young farmers who have challenged convention . They take to the stage to share some of their insight and to explain how they are creating their own opportunities.

Guy Thallon will discuss his successful agri-tech project and cereal and arable farmer Luke Abblitt will reveal the challenges he faced when he took on a council farm and worked to double his acreage. Nuffield Scholar David Walston will focus on how he has used beef cattle to help improve soil conditions. He will be joined by fellow Nuffield Scholar Russell McKenzie speaking about his experiences with no till crop establishment.

The conference will also look at the political and economic issues facing agriculture with presentations from Lucia Zitti, NFU Economist, and Gail Soutar, NFU Chief Economist and International Affairs Adviser.

The all-day event will also include opportunities for networking and a fringe exhibition with stands from leading businesses.

Tickets for the East of England Farming Conference are on sale now. Book online at eoefarmingconference.co.uk. East of England Agricultural Society members should select the button indicating they are a member to take advantage of the discounted conference fee.

 

 

 

Careers Forum for agricultural students will launch at CropTec

Careers Forum for agricultural students will launch at CropTec

CropTec, the leading specialist arable event will host, in conjunction with the East of England Agricultural Society, an interactive workshop designed to offer students a diverse insight into career opportunities within the arable industry.

Sponsored by EDGE, an industry led project that aims to EDUCATE, DEVELOP, GROW and EMPLOY those taking their first steps into careers in the food and farming industries, the event will address some of the challenges students face. Those include the many, multi-faceted career paths now open to them: the different skills required and how to approach specific companies and organisations for career advice and employment opportunities.

From practical farm management to research, technology, agronomy and consultancy, students will hear professionals from a range of disciplines and recent graduates who will explain a typical working day, roles, responsibilities, challenges and benefits.

Stephen Howe, CropTec’s Development Director, says: “This is a brilliant opportunity for students to explore the diverse employment opportunities which exist in the dynamic, fast moving and increasingly global arable sector.  The CropTec Careers Forum will highlight the numerous courses, skills and experience required to enable students to achieve a successful career in one of the UK’s most exciting industries.”

Held on Wednesday, November 25, the careers forum, which is free to attend and will create awareness about the different career opportunities in the arable sector available to students.

CropTec provides the perfect platform for students to network and gain free face-to-face advice from organisations, exhibitors and industry specialists in understanding potential career options available in the arable industry.

CropTec, which opens for business on Tuesday, November 24, is the essential technical, knowledge exchange event for arable and mixed farmers, agronomists and advisers, sprayer and spreader operators and contractors.

For more information on CropTec visit www.croptecshow.com

 

 

 

Farming Conference list guest speakers – 3rd December

Farming Conference list guest speakers – 3rd December

Be inspired by expert speakers at the first East of England Farming Conference this winter.

The debut conference will take place at the East of England Showground in Peterborough on Thursday 3 December.

Among the speakers will be four ‘next generation’ farmers who will highlight a wide range of industry opportunities and challenges.

Guy Thallon will discuss his successful agri-tech project and cereal and arable farmers Luke Abblitt will discuss the challenges he faced he took on a council farm and worked to double his acreage. Nuffield Scholar David Walston will focus on how he has used beef cattle to help improve soil conditions. He will be joined by fellow Nuffield Scholar Russell McKenzie.

The conference will also look at the political and economic issues facing agriculture with talks from Lucia Zitti, NFU Economist, and Gail Soutar, NFU Chief Economist and International Affairs Adviser.

The all-day event will also include opportunities for networking and a fringe exhibition with stands from leading businesses.

The conference is organised by the East of England Agricultural Society. It is supported by Anglia Farmers, Camgrain, Brown & Co, EDGE Careers, Bayer, Churchgate, Roythornes and Safety Revolution.

Tickets for the East of England Farming Conference are on sale now. Book online at  Farming Conference website

Please click on the link for the Programme on the day East of England Conferene Programme

Show success results in Lyon’s family heading to East of England Smithfield festival

Show success results in Lyon’s family heading to East of England Smithfield festival

Following recent show successes around the UK, the Lyon family, who farm near Bourne in Lincolnshire, are excited to be heading to the 2015 East of England Smithfield Festival in Peterborough on Thursday 26 – Friday 27 November, where they hope to add to their growing trophy cabinet.

The family are a shining example of what hard work and determination can achieve. Primarily landscape gardeners, this family delved into the cattle industry only 12 years ago with just two heifers and by 2012 they won the baby beef champion at Smithfield and in 2013 they were winning at most major events including the taking the champion at the Royal Welsh Show.

From the outset, the aim of their cattle enterprise was always to be able to breed their own cattle that would be good enough for the show-ring. Much emphasis has been made on new genetics in order to achieve this. They are now into the second generation of their own breeding heifers and use Belgian Blue and Limousin crosses, to produce a commercial cross.

“We want to produce the best and showing cattle gives us, and other beef farmers, the opportunity to promote the top end of the beef industry,” explains Jonny Lyon. “It also means, if successful, that we are able to secure a premium at market.

“The show attendance also gives us the opportunity to learn from industry and other farmers and keep up to date with the latest developments,“ Jonny adds. “ Stocktech at this year’s   Smithfield Festival promises to provide a whole range of new information. This is invaluable for our business growth and future profitability.

The success of the Lyon’s family is no surprise to East of England Agricultural Society show director, William Haire, who is looking forward to seeing the stock at this East of England Smithfield Festival in November.

“The Lyon family is incredibly focussed. They work hard at being informed and open to new developments in beef management. Their attention to detail, and focus on the genetics, the nutrition, the health and the general welfare of the animals, is paramount to their success.

“They have a great eye for high quality animals and understand the importance of conformation. And it is because of this, they have achieved such outstanding results,” concludes William.

 

2012 Smithfield
The Lyon family celebrating another win at the 2012 East of England Smithfield Festival

The 2015 East of England Smithfield Festival takes place at the East of England Showground, Peterborough, on 26 and 27 November.


For more information please contact livestock@eastofengland.org.uk or telephone 01733 234 451 www.eoesmithfield.co.uk

East of England Farming Conference – 3rd December 15

East of England Farming Conference – 3rd December 15

A new conference will bring expert speakers from all areas of agriculure to the East of England Showground.
Showcasing agricultural innovation, the conference will attract specialist industry speakers to discuss issues affecting farming, the latest research and developments in agri-business. Speakers will cover technical and politcal issues as well as looking at prospects and challengs or the next generation.
Discounts for EoE Agricultural Society Members
EOE Farmng Conference

 

 

 

 

 

For further information and to book you place now on-line visit the Farming Conference  website

Members offer for Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association lecture

Members offer for Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association lecture

As Part of our activities throughout the East of England we meet and work with our fellow Agricultural Societies throughout the region to share our knowledge to improve our work and activities. Following on from a recent meeting the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Society have very kindly extended an invitation to East of England Agricultural Society members to attend a keynote lecture at the John Innes Conference Centre on Thursday 12th November 2015 which they are sponsoring as part of Agri-Tech Week.

This event will provide a great opportunity for people from food production, farming and science to hear from Lord Haskins of Skidby (former Chairman, Northern Foods and Express Dairies), one of the most influential thinkers in the agri-food industry, and to contribute to the on-going dialogue between science and agriculture in the region.

East of England Agricultural Society members can apply for a discounted ticket at the same rate as RNAA members, which we hope will be the start of more reciprocal arrangements between both our societies in the future. Simply follow the instructions on the online booking area.

 

View more information here.

 

Week Commencing – 9th -15th November;  For further information and book your place now

Upcoming Events

Dec
1
Fri
all-day Winter Stock Festival @ East of England Showground
Winter Stock Festival @ East of England Showground
Dec 1 – Dec 2 all-day
Winter Stock Festival @ East of England Showground
The Winter Stock Festival (Formerly East of England Smithfield Festival), our premier Winter Primestock Show returns on the 1st and 2nd of December 2017.   Whats on? Trade stands, Product demonstrations, Seminars, Livestock & Lamb …

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Dec
14
Thu
all-day NAAC Contractors 2017 @ East of England Showground
NAAC Contractors 2017 @ East of England Showground
Dec 14 all-day
All UK contractors are urged to come along to Contractor 2017 on 14th December and join the only event focused entirely on agricultural contractors. Contractors may be ‘Farming’s Best Kept Secret’, but they must not be …

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