Farmer Focus: Government should buy British produce

The 23 June  saw the end of an era – after 11 years my wife Claire had her final day of work at a firm of land agents to spend time at home on some projects we are working on. 

Little did I know this would cause such economic turmoil, with markets in disarray, political parties collapsing, and uncertainty across the world.

If we are to leave the EU, we have got to be very focused on getting what we need as an industry for the long term.

Farming was missing from most of the pre-referendum debates, and it now needs to push itself to the fore as the ingredient supplier to Britain’s largest manufacturing industry. 

Farmers and consumers need to support Red Tractor and the government should procure British-grown produce for institutions such as schools, hospitals and the armed forces. 

See also: Read more from our Livestock Farmer Focus writers 

The government needs to remember that our glorious landscape, including our iconic hills and uplands, are created and maintained by us and recognise its importance to the nation and other industries such as tourism.

See also: It would be folly to leave the EU

The weather is proving to be frustrating. 

We’ve got half the silage done, but still 100 acres to go, and for the past 10 days we have not had two rain-free days in a row.

Faecal egg count tests have shown varied levels depending on which part of the farm the lambs are. There are no worms, but nematodirus levels vary. Lambs with high counts have been dosed.

We also need to get the clipping done, but again the weather is causing us problems.

The bulls went out on 1 July, which was also the launch of BVD Free England campaign. 

We are accredited BVD free and know the benefits of being free of this disease. 

England is lagging behind its neighbours on this and I cannot emphasise enough what a difference it makes to herd health, fertility and performance (physical and financial) being BVD free.

Simon Bainbridge runs a 650ha organic farm in Northumberland alongside his wife Claire and his parents. With 150 suckler cows and 1,500 breeding ewes, healthy maternal livestock and quality feed are priorities