Archive Article: 1999/03/12 - Farmers Weekly

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

A meating of minds… Christine Lloyd-Knight and Eric Phipps at the Lincoln Red Cattle Societys show and sale last week. Neither are strangers to the breed. Christine won the Midlands final of TVs Masterchef with a striploin of Lincoln Red beef earlier this year and Eric is a local butcher. Top bull price at the days stock auction was 2000gns.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Richard Duckett (front left), chairman of the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution, receives a cheque for £4000 from Ian Clarke, chairman of the Wokingham and Reading Agricultural Society. The money was part of the societys record £9000 surplus from last years show. Also pictured are (from left) society members David Howison, Ted Smith, Sandra Faulkner and Jim Walker.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Father and daughter crofting team Dennis and Maressa Munro have won the crofter of the year award presented last night (Thurs) at the annual dinner of the Scottish Crofters Union in Fort William. The Munros work full-time on the 440ha (1100 acre) croft at Feorlig, near Dunvegan on Skye.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey took a turn at feeding the cattle during his visit to Temple Mill Farm, near Banbury, Oxon. The archbishop was welcomed by farm owner William Sabin, who runs 140 single suckled beef cattle, and then held discussions with members of the Farmers Forum, a local church-based group concerned with stress in rural areas.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Welcome relaxation of buffer zone code

New rules governing spray buffer zones near watercourses are imminent. That is good news both for growers and the environment.

Unlike the arbitrary 6m restrictions currently hampering many products, the new rules will allow local environmental risk assessments of pesticides (LERAP). And, where risks are small, that could allow growers to spray far closer to watercourses than has been possible previously.

Some critics argue that LERAP ignores key factors affecting drift. They are right. But they also miss a key point. A simple scheme is far more likely to be used by growers than one encompassing too many factors.

LERAP promises to strike a happy balance between good farm practice and continued environmental protection.

Precision techniques lack precise advice

All dressed up and no where to go. Its hard to resist levelling that accusation against all the latest high tech precision farming techniques.

Developers of satellite navigation, yield mapping and soil mapping systems deserve praise for producing hardware capable of operating in the demanding climate created by combine harvesters, sprayers and fertiliser spreaders.

Sadly, so far, purchasers of such equipment have been woefully let down on the other side of the farm gate. Many have been disappointed by the lack of advice from those who should be helping them interpret and profit from the information.

Until agronomists develop some meaningful advice, its hard to imagine the technology becoming a real flier.

Wrapping it up for the next silaging season

It may be cold and damp now, but the silage season will soon be upon us. Make sure youre kitted up for it by winning one of three pieces of McHale equipment in our spring competition.

Entering the competition couldnt be more straightforward. Just read the guidelines that appear in this issueand our issues of Mar12, 19, 26 and Apr 2 and put the list of bale wrapper features into their correct order. Then simply fill in the coupon and send it to us. You could win either a round bale wrapper, a conventional bale wrapper or a bale handler for wrapped and unwrapped bales.

The total value of these exciting prizes is £13,200. And all it will cost you to enter is the price of a stamp!

Inglorious mud a real pain to stock industry

Theres certainly nothing glorious about mud if youre up to your ankles in it day after day.

And its more than frustrating if youve got stock inside and forage shortages looming.

Taking action now, in the form of buying brewers grains or maize gluten, could help counter forage shortages.

Considering turning stock out for only a short time, or perhaps only turning out the lightest animals might also help to minimise the problem.

But theres one thing for sure; a week of dry weather would be welcomed with open arms.

Clover very much the trend of the moment

Rather like flashy trainers, satellite TV and million £ footballers, clover is becoming trendy.

Both red and white clover are becoming more popular as many producers consider including a greater proportion in grass mixtures.

Clovers renewed popularity is a good example of how science has brought practical improvements for farmers.

Promises of improved longevity and greater nitrogen tolerance mean clover may no longer be a passing fad. It could be a long term trend used to help producers cut costs on all farms.

Sweet reward to tune of a grand prize…

How sweet is your beet? Have a go at our FARMERS WEEKLY/Dow AgroSciences Sugar Beet Challenge and it could be sweeter still.

One thousand pounds is up for grabs for farmers who can show true beet growing prowess. Best practice is the name of the game, rather than outright yield.

So if you make a good job of growing this important crop why not have a go at winning some more recognition?

And theres a free calculator for every entry received.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Ginger spice… South Devon cattle on parade at Exeter last week. To find out who paid what for what, see page 35.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Farm foreman Martin Beard shifts stock at Moor View Farm, Weare, Somerset, last week, venue for the biggest one-day dairy sale so far this year. With 380 dairy cows and followers on offer for I M Ham, the event saw a top price of 1000gns and an average of £582 for the 240 cows. Trade was driven by farmers looking to fill quota, says auctioneer Derek Biss of Greenslade Taylor Hunt.

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

NEW groundwater regulations were introduced to improve protection from certain polluting and toxic substances, says Alan Barnden of the Environment Agency.

"Pesticides applied in an approved manner to an approved cropped area are not covered by the rules. But any disposal of tank or sprayer washings in the yard or on areas of uncropped land of low wildlife value, as described in the pesticide users Green Code, will need an Authorisation under the regulations," says Mr Barnden.

In addition, cleaning a sprayer in the farm yard where washings finish up in a soakaway will not be permitted from Apr 1.

The only way forward in this situation is to have a catch tank to collect washings either for later disposal by an approved specialist contractor, cleaning through a carbon filtration system or application to an authorised uncropped area.

To avoid or cut disposals, the sprayer tank can be triple rinsed with a tank rinse nozzle and the washings sprayed out on to a part of the crop that has not received a full approved dose. Approved tank washing additives cleared by the manufacturer for crop application can be used and the outside of the sprayer also washed down within the cropped area.

If spraying is carried out by a contractor the farmer is generally responsible for holding any necessary authorisation. The contractor is responsible for following the requirements of any such authorisation if cleaning down out of the crop. Under a contract farming agreement a contractor can apply for the authorisation.

Applications for authorisation should be made to the local Environment Agency office by Mar 31. That will permit disposal to be carried out until the authorisation arrives. If an application is made on or after April 1 disposals cannot be made until the authorisation is received.

In most farm circumstances the initial cost will be £84. But a full authorisation could cost £589 followed by an annual charge.

lContact EA Info line on 0645-333 111 for local office details. &#42

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

This analysis has been prepared in conjunction with Grant Thornton, a leading firm of accountants and financial advisers, with a specialist team dedicated to the agricultural industry. It aims to help farm owners and managers maximise their profits, and operates via a network of 42 offices across the country (01993-771121).

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Archive Article: 1999/03/12

12 March 1999

Imagine losing count… 6000 Corriedale ewes mustered at Mendip Hills station on New Zealands south island. They are part of a flock of 14,000 ewes and 900 Hereford cows on the 6070ha (15,000 acre) station which rises to about 1000m (3000 ft) above sea level.

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