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CROP MANAGEMENT

Miscanthus fuels Norfolk grower's desire to improve soil

Adam Brewer has turned to growing miscanthus to improve his soils and the environment, while also giving him a profitable low-input crop for his north Norfolk farm. The crop will…

CEREAL DRILLS

Low-input cropping slashes costs and risk for tenant farmer

After years of struggling to make his conventional arable rotation pay, a tenant farmer has begun trialling a system that rewards him for environmental gains rather than bumper yields. John…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What's in your livestock shed? visits a Powys beef finisher

A mid-Wales beef finisher is capturing an additional 0.4kg daily liveweight gain (DLWG) a head since making improvements to housing. The slatted shed was built before the Hammond family took…

TECHNOLOGY

How moisture-seeking drilling kit helps drought-hit Aussies

A new drilling outfit developed in Australia is using clever moisture-sensing tines to automatically alter sowing depth according to soil conditions. Moisture Planting Technologies (MPT), based in New South Wales,…

LAND MARKETS

Land in your area: East of England

Buyers and sellers seeking certainty may now feel more confident about making long-term decisions in the land market following the recent decisive general election, say agents. Throughout 2019, just 10,788…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

How to avoid the top 5 nutrient deficiencies in OSR

Correcting micronutrient deficiencies in oilseed rape can raise yields by an average 0.3t/ha, according to trials, helping growers get even more from a crop that is proving to be increasingly…

FARM POLICY

Agriculture Bill: What's new and what's Eustice promising?

Defra minister George Eustice has pledged to tackle poor profitability and look after farmers as the government pushes ahead with its plans to reform support for agriculture. Mr Eustice made…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Advice on testing your flock for fluke after wet weather

Extended wet weather can increase the incidence of fluke disease in sheep flocks. Local conditions and individual farm situations will dictate the appropriate course of action, but sheep specialist Emily…

4X4S

Pickup test: Isuzu D-Max Utility

The D-Max Utility is a proper no-frills workhorse with a generous towing capacity, impressive payload and a reasonable price tag. Couple this to a five-year, 125,000-mile warranty, and it makes…

4X4S

Pickup test: Toyota Hilux Active

There is little doubt that budget Hilux models are well made and reliable workhorses. Tidily laid out controls and a comfortable drive make it a particularly appealing option at this…

ENVIRONMENTAL SCHEMES

Farming carbon: How to make money from new woodland

A government-backed scheme to reward farmers in England for storing carbon by converting farmland to woodland is set to offer landowners a guaranteed income for up to 35 years. A…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

OSR yields rise after fertiliser cut by 30% on Shropshire farm

Shropshire grower Matthew Williams has increased his oilseed rape yields while also cutting his fertiliser costs by fully utilising the residual nitrogen in his soil. Mr Williams’ OSR yields increased…

FEED AND NUTRITION

How can farmers improve feed security amid climate change?

Climate change means UK farmers are experiencing more extreme weather conditions which can make growing crops far harder. What lessons can be learned from other countries to help improve feed…

BOVINE TB

Rules, compensation and advice for bovine TB in pig herds

According to Defra statistics, there were 38 pig premises under TB restriction in 2018, with 122 pigs tested for the disease. Although this is low compared to TB in cattle,…

DIVERSIFICATION

Field to plate - diversification on Japanese farms

Japan’s food culture is built on strong regional associations and loyalties, alongside superb quality and freshness.  However, accelerating rural depopulation, falling farm incomes, concerns over food security and a crippling…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Avian influenza: One farm's robust plans to combat the threat

Chief among the threats to any poultry business in the UK is the incursion of avian influenza (AI). It is possible to reduce the risk of it finding its way…

4X4S

Pickup test: Mitsubishi L200 Club Cab 4Life

A major redesign of Mitsubishi’s L200 has delivered a stand-out exterior, though whether it has actually improved its looks is debatable. Base spec 4Life models get a smart cab with…

HUSBANDRY

Tail docking lambs: Advice, legislation and methods compared

Tail docking is routinely carried out to avoid soiling of the fleece around a lamb’s rear and thus prevent fly strike - a painful condition where flies lay their eggs…

BARLEY

How to grow a 10t/ha-plus malting spring barley crop

Norfolk grower Alex Wilcox grew a bumper 10t/ha-plus malting spring barley crop in 2019, using low seed rates and early drilling to achieve monster grain ears at harvest. His barley…

ENVIRONMENT

More visitors to the countryside – good or bad for farming?

The vital role of farmers in shaping the nation’s protected landscapes must be recognised as new policies are drawn up for the countryside, industry leaders say. Their warning follows calls…

MEDICINES

How oral dosing was cut by 70% in high-input flock

A County Durham shepherd is heading into the 2020 lambing period hoping to continue using fewer antibiotics in neonatal lambs after a major reduction last year. Graeme Wood, who has…

BUSINESS CLINIC

Business Clinic: Can I recover VAT on farmhouse expenditure?

Whether it’s a legal, tax, insurance, management or land issue, Farmers Weekly’s experts can help. Here, Liz Jones, a partner with Baldwins, addresses the issue of reclaiming VAT on farmhouse expenditure.…

LAND MARKETS

6 unusual owners of UK farmland

Farmers who wish to own land have had to battle with deep-pocketed rivals for decades to get their name on the title deeds. Access to the finite resource is highly…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How trials are helping two farmers maximise crop margins

Managing risk is the key objective for both AHDB’s two Strategic Cereals Farm hosts, as they look to use some of their on-farm trial lessons to manage crops affected by…

BUSINESS CLINIC

Business Clinic: Protecting the public from tree felling work

Whether it’s a legal, tax, insurance, management or land issue, Farmers Weekly’s experts can help. Here, Nigel Wellings of Acres Insurance Brokers advises on appropriate public liability coverage. See also:…

MARKET OPPORTUNITIES

Winter barley abandoned for triticale on Shropshire farm

A Shropshire grower is swapping to triticale this spring after a wet autumn prevented him from drilling more than half of his winter barley area. With its tolerance to drought,…

PARASITIC DISEASES

6 tips for a good livestock parasite control plan

January is the best time for livestock farmers to plan out a parasite control strategy for the year ahead. A robust and practical programme will help reduce disease burdens, economic…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How a YEN winner grew top-yielding wheat and OSR crops

Award-winning winter wheat and oilseed rape yields are being produced by Lincolnshire grower Mark Stubbs from a farm that just six years ago was seeing yields being strangled by a bad blackgrass…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

How to reduce the risk of abortions in cattle

Cattle abortion is a significant health and welfare issue that causes economic loss in treatment costs, lost production and labour inputs. Just a single case of abortion represents a substantial…

LAMBING

8 ways to prepare for a busy lambing season

With lambing already under way on some units and not far around the corner for most commercial sheep farms, it is timely to start thinking about preparation for lambing. It…

IRRIGATION

How irrigation is changing on an AHDB potato demo farm

The economic and environmental costs associated with irrigating 440ha of potatoes at AHDB’s Strategic Potato (Spot) Farm North prompted a rethink on the best way to maintain product quality in…

ATVS AND UTVS

How the ATVtrac tracker finds stolen bikes in under two hours

Millions of pounds’ worth of ATVs and farm buggies have been recovered thanks to retrofit tracking systems. The covert kits are fitted discreetly in the machine’s shell and ping regular…

BUSINESS CLINIC

Business Clinic: Lifting an agricultural tie on property

Whether it’s a legal, tax, insurance, management or land issue, Farmers Weekly’s experts can help. Here, Alex Madden of Thrings advises on lifting an agricultural tie from a farmhouse. Q:…

CALVING

How a South Devon farm has reduced age at first calving

A change in youngstock management has allowed a Cornish farm to maximise growth rates and reduce age at first calving to two years. The Rowes, who run a 140-cow South…

PLANNING PERMISSION

How to meet environmental requirements when developing land

Farmers considering developing land need to consider the impact of the proposed project on biodiversity and whether the site itself could pose a risk to future residents. While a proposed…