6 September 2002

INVESTMENTMEANSRISK

As news of Amelca going into

receivership spread, a few weeks ago, it left most producers already hard hit by the summers low prices feeling stunned. The 150 producer-investors including our Farmer Focus writer John Stanley had done what many of the industrys pundits had said: Investing further down the supply chain.

Our hearts go out to the individuals involved and we hope that they didnt invest more than they could afford to lose. One lesson we all need to learn from this is that wherever money is invested risks are taken. For many of those with money in shares, ISAs or pensions, these messages have also been forced home this summer.

The key question for producers now is do they continue to invest in processing. But the main reasons for investing still apply. These include gaining more

control further down the supply chain, adding value which is returned to

producers and keeping a floor in the market to secure better prices.

Hopefully, these reasons will see

producers continue to take more control of processing. But with closer

consideration of the risks taken and low risk options taken where possible. These may include investing in current processors businesses, such as Milk Link, or buying shares in dairy

companies.

And there are still opportunities, with some good marketing, which will help producers gain more of the retail price for milk, as a group of producers

featured in this Update have found.

Lancs branding success 6

High yields and grass go 8

Options for quota reform 10

Dairy Event preview 14

Californian calf rearing 18

Feeding cereals safely 20

FW/Eprinex competition 22

Why one herd beats two 24

TOP and PLI bull ranking 26

Testing teat cup liners 29

Non-antibiotic mastitis product 30concerns

Buying second-hand tractors 32

Bacteriology helps prevent 35mastitis

Strep agalactiae: Bug comeback 36

MRI cows show good potential 38

Edited by Jessica Buss