Farmer Focus Livestock: LFA support is a must, says Iain Green

I recently attended the NFUS AGM. Brian Pack ably answered points and criticism on his report, whatever the decision there will be winners and losers but one thing is certain, that support will be needed for the LFA areas to keep both livestock and people there.

We are fortunate our Rural Affairs Minister for Scotland is also our local MSP, not only did he give an excellent address at the AGM and displayed a wide knowledge of Scottish agriculture, answering many of the points raised without assistance but he also listens to the local farmers at grass roots level. It was great to hear an announcement has been made, to offer up to £6000 towards temporary accommodation for those farmers with snow damaged buildings. The only problem is, how and where do you find temporary accommodation for lambing ewes.

Luckily, we missed the worst of the snow and although the ground is slowly drying out we are managing to progress with the spring field work. Owing to the weather and ground conditions we were held up with muck spreading resulting in us employing an extra pair of hands to drive the muck spreader during the night.

I am continuing to sell hoggs and cast ewes on a fortnightly basis at our local auction mart. Prices have certainly justified the cost of concentrates and recently I sold a pen of Texel x Mule ewes to average £115 a head, I dread to think how much gimmers will cost this year.

With calving under way, lambing about to start, more than 1000 acres of spring cereals to drill, grass to fertilise and spraying of winter cereals to be done, I don’t think any of us will be idle for the next few weeks. I only hope the weather will be on our side.

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