Farmer Focus: Weaned lambs are thriving

We weaned the lambs a couple of weeks ago – they are thriving on some good headage and their lameness has all cleared up. All we need now is the store price to pick up so I can shift a few.

I took some Suffolk-cross gimmers to Malton shearling sale for my dear friend Mr T (Mr Thornally) and it was a roaring trade. It’s amazing how popular these sorts of sheep are in such places.

My sleep deprivation goes on, with late nights on the combine and baby Tom teething. How I wish for a good night’s sleep.

However, we have never been in such a good position work-wise. Oilseed rape is all in the shed and I have just got rolling in the wheat.

With such a good window of weather, we have been able to get all our manure on and ploughed in the dry.

We source our manure from a local pig and chicken farmer, which we swap for straw. The manure has revitalised our farm over the past few years.

There is an old saying in Lincolnshire: “you can’t farm without a***holes”, which is very true, as many arable units around here are plastering their land with muck and also saving on bagged fertiliser.

Which brings me nicely to prices. I don’t often air my views on politics – saying Jeremy Clarkson should be the next prime minister down the local pub is about as far as it gets.

But seriously, our government is going to have to step in to safeguard us farmers one day with these volatile prices, which no business can foresee or withstand.

The grain prices are being driven further down by speculators in the city and the supermarkets are just running riot with beef and lamb prices through their cut-throat offers.

I can think of a good solution to the speculators that involves using their braces as a bungee cord off the Humber Bridge, but I don’t know what you do about the supermarkets. Keep your chins up, my fellow farmers, things can’t get any worse.

James Read farms in partnership with his father, in Louth, Lincolnshire. They farm 400ha of mainly arable land, run 200 breeding sheep and a pack of working/trialling sheepdogs.

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