Bag yourself a free day’s consultation

Farmers Weekly and Dairy Update magazine are offering one lucky dairy producer the chance to have a free day’s consultation to help highlight the main pinch-points on their system.

In response to Kingshay Dairy Manager figures, which show 69% of animals leaving the dairy herd are forced culls, Dairy Update is looking to help producers reduce these costly losses.

In fact, Kingshay calculations show reducing the level of forced culls by 10% across the national herd could save the UK dairy industry £32m.

Whether you are you unhappy with mastitis incidence, keen to boost fertility or unsure of how to maximise herd mobility, a herd appraisal could help locate key areas for attention and boost herd performance.


In support of Dairy Update’s initiative, XLVets is offering free skills training up to the value of £500 through its award-winning FarmSkills programme to the selected farmer and his whole team. The farm will be able to chose from a range of workshops that could help boost herd health on the farm.

The selected farmer will be visited by Rob Mintern, Farmers Weekly Livestock Adviser of the Year 2009 and Agrii consultant, who will take an overview of the whole herd, from cow behaviour and ventilation to health records and parlour routine.

“I commonly see pinch-points on farm that could be impacting on herd performance,” he says. “For example, high levels of persistent mastitis could be due to liner size, cow environment or parlour routine.

“There is room for everyone to reduce the level of forced culls and particularly first lactation culls, where most losses are seen,” he says.

In support of the initiative, Andrew Davies, of Synergy Farm Health from the XL Vets network, comments: “Culling cows involuntarily is costly. It also signals a failure of disease control. A planned programme of health management through herd health planning and practical skills training is key to managing culling rates.”


Send in a summary of why you want to get involved to Aly Balsom, Farmers Weekly, Quadrant House, The Quadrant, Sutton, Surrey or by Monday 16 July.

Let us know what areas you would you like to improve on farm and an overview of your system.

We’ll then select a farmer to be profiled. The chosen farmer will be visited by Agrii consultant Rob Mintern and Dairy Update editor Aly Balsom. They’ll undertake a full review of the system, highlighting key areas for attention. An article on the visit will then appear in Farmers Weekly and Dairy Update.

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