Farmer Focus: Ready for another busy harvest

It has been good to meet up with lots of friends at various events over the past few weeks, what a fantastic summer it has been for getting out and about.

Let us hope the weather holds through harvest.

I do enjoy hearing what is going on around the country and catching up with all the news – it is amazing how a few miles can make such a significant difference to the development of crops and the weather patterns.

In catching up, I have become very aware that the only real downside of writing this piece is that when I get chatting people already know what I have been up to or who my latest issue is with. 

Casual comments about what I write range from advice on grain marketing being useful to how certain good friends are called in by their father to read Farmers Weekly when it arrives in the post.

See also: Read more from our arable Farmer Focus writers

Probably the most interesting comes from one of the most prominent individuals in the industry who tells me that his wife looks forward my regular performance and sets the diary to the required five weekly interval.

This all really does concern me.

“There is nothing like looking after 10,000 “happy” campers for a long weekend to make livestock keeping seem relatively easy.”
Andrew Blenkiron

What if I get it wrong and how can I, or you for that matter, cope with such expectation? 

As usual that time of the year has leapt upon us – harvest is here.

The rush to get grain stores cleaned out, Red Tractor inspection passed, combine serviced and ready to go all cause the usual element of panic, especially when we get a heat wave that scorches the last of the moisture out of the cereals.

Thankfully, there’s just enough grass left in the river meadows to keep the lambs and our fantastic Red Poll calves growing away, although they do seem to be able to cope without a lot of nutrients for most of the year.

Before I write again we will have hosted our second music festival of the summer. There is nothing like looking after 10,000 “happy” campers for a long weekend to make livestock keeping seem relatively easy, but the rewards make it all worthwhile.

Andrew Blenkiron manages the 4,400ha Euston Estate, south of Thetford. Principal farm enterprises are combinable and root crops, including sugar beet. In addition the estate supports let land, sheep, outdoor pigs, poultry, suckler cows, horses and stewardship.


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