A Cornish dairy farm has received over £17,000 in grant funding to help buy equipment that will cut costs by more than £6000 a year.

J & A Willcocks & Son, of Tregleath Farm, Washaway, Wadebride, received the 40% grant from Objective One and DEFRA, through Dairy Collect, part of Cornwall Enterprise.

Other farmers could benefit, as Dairy Collect has about £1.6m to help producers rationalise the cost of milk collection and transportation, save energy use, reduce waste or enable reuse of resources.

It has already committed over £700,000 to 64 projects across Cornwall.

James Willcocks, who milks 220 cows at Tregleath Farm, has used the money to expand his milk storage from 10,000 litres to 16,000 litres, allowing him to move to every-other-day collection.

This will yield an extra £5400 in bonuses from Dairy Crest.

He has also extended the vehicle turning area.

A new ice builder and plate cooler will improve the efficiency for cooling the milk before it enters the bulk tank, generating a £220 electricity saving.

And extra storage for water that has passed through the plate cooler will enable it to be reused for washing down of equipment or as drinking water for the cows, cutting bills by £470 a year.

“This was a great chance to move our business forward.

All farmers know the costs of producing milk and collection are on the rise and we were keen to do what we could to ensure the long-term viability of our business,” said Mr Willcocks.

Dairy Collect has a further 75 projects in the pipeline and runs until December 2006.

For more information call 01872 322 889.