Despite having started harvest almost two weeks later than normal, we have finished on the same day as last year. Yields of both grain and straw have been far better than expected, but to make sure we will have enough straw for the livestock all winter we have purchased an extra 18.2ha of winter barley straw from a neighbouring farm.

Pig prices are slowly rising, but have still a long way to go to cover the ever-increasing cost of feed.

We recently purchased our replacement Highland Mule gimmers at an average of £155. These have joined our own Texel-cross gimmers and are being flushed on lush aftermath. We also took the decision to purchase some Mule ewe lambs to join our own homebred Texel crosses. These will be kept and tupped next autumn. Hopefully these extra mouths will help to keep on top of next year’s ragwort.

Last month the Simmental Society held its first Leading Ladies Sale in Carlisle. The criteria for the sale was that every female had to have figures higher than the breed average to be allowed to enter. The sale was a tremendous success, with a calved heifer making 13,000gns. Our entry of two heifers received first and second price, with our first going on to be reserve champion and our second-prize heifer receiving the second top price of 7,300gns.

Autumn calvers are still outside on aftermath with their newborn calves and are being supplemented with bales of haylage. Thankfully their pre-calving ration of little grass and straw has been successful in keeping calving straightforward.

Iain Green farms 1,110ha as a family partnership. Stock includes 130 pedigree Simmentals, 330 Simmental-crosses, plus followers, 500 Highland Mule ewes and 340 sows. The partnership also runs a large haulage business.

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