Beefing up breeding programmes

Published Tuesday, 14th May 2019 in SAC Consulting news

Beefing up breeding programmes
Gavin Hill

Cattle breeding needs to adapt to changing market demands, a senior beef consultant will tell farmers ahead of this year’s national Beef Expo event. 

Gavin Hill, from SAC Consulting – part of Scotland’s Rural College, will join a National Beef Association (NBA) farm tour at Netherhall Farm, in Cumbria, on Wednesday 22 May – ahead of the main Expo event in Kendal the following day.

Hosted by David and Maggie Kelly, who run a pedigree herd of Hereford cattle as well as a smaller herd of pedigree Limousins, the tour will offer an insight into the NBA member farm and technical advice from guest speakers.

Gavin will talk about the drive towards breeding programmes which meet the demands of the market place, leading to a more efficient product, both in terms of performance and financially.   

The following week, he will join host farmers Robert and Barbara Milne and their son James, at Scotland’s Beef Event at Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, on Thursday 30 May.

The family have a 500-acre all-grass farm with a suckler herd of 320 Salers and Salers cross cows, which are crossed with Charolais, Salers and Aberdeen-Angus bulls.

“I will be speaking with the host farmer about his cattle system and how they are currently changing this,” he said.

“To have a profitable beef operation many factors have to come together. There lie many obstacles ahead, along with the continuing challenges and uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

“However, farmers have for years adapted to any challenges put in front of them whether it be weather, financial, disease, climate, political or any policy changes. In fact, every day farmers have to adapt and change based on the weather, cost and prices.” 

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