Top Four Scottish Dairy Farms for 2017 named
Donald Millar, the official assessor for the AgriScot Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year, sponsored by Ice Robotics, has chosen the top four for 2017.
Each farm will receive an inspection during October, and the final accolade will be announced at AgriScot on Wednesday 15th November.
Donald had a very difficult task of selecting the top four out of the top twenty purely from performance details such as calving age, calving index, somatic cell count, yields and longevity.
All the data was assessed anonymously, i.e. without seeing business names or addresses.
Donald is now looking forward to visiting the farms to study everything from calf rearing, sire selection, practical management techniques, feeding and nutrition programmes and to view happy and contented cows.
The top four farms in alphabetical order are:
A Colquhoun Ltd, Dendoldrum, Inverbervie.
Wm. Hamilton & Son, Meldrum, Blairdrummond, Stirling.
KSH Farmers, Kennetsideheads, Eccles, Kelso.
T & A Wadsworth, Big Balcraig, Whauphill, Newton Stewart.
Average performance figures for the top four herds are 725 cows, 11387 litres in 305 days, calving age 24 months, calving index 380 days and somatic cell count 121.
AgriScot Scottish Dairy Farm of The Year 2016 Revealed
The 2016 winner of the prestigious AgriScot Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year award was announced at the farm business event, on Wednesday 16th November.
The accolade, which is sponsored by Cogent Breeding Ltd, has this year been awarded to K & I Millar and Sons, Trailflat, run by Keith and Irene Millar and son Donald.
The official assessor Jimmy Goldie, a highly respected dairy management advisor and rumen technical manager with Carrs Billington, chose the winner after visiting the final four farms, which were shortlisted from every milk-recorded dairy farm in Scotland.
The award was judged according to a wide range of criteria, including calf rearing, sire selection, practical management techniques, feeding and nutrition programmes and the general well being and contentment of the cows.
Trailflat, at Lochmaben near Lockerbie was awarded the title based on a number of different factors, including the cleanliness and comfort of the herd, their outstanding calving index and the general health and footcare of the herd.
Runners up in alphabetical order were:
– A Colquhoun Ltd., Dendoldrum, Inverbervie, Kincardineshire
– Wm. Hamilton & Son, Meldrum, Blairdrummond, Stirling
– University of Edinburgh, Langhill Farm, Roslin, Midlothian.
Jimmy Goldie had the following to say about the 2016 award:
“All the top twenty farms were a huge credit to Scottish dairy farming, especially in these times of low milk prices, but the top four were absolutely outstanding in every aspect of their detailed management; from calf rearing, fertility, animal health and comfort to yields and length of life in the herd, and it was a very difficult task deciding the top award.”
“Congratulations must go to the Miller family at Trailflats who are the winners of this year’s AgriScot Dairy Farm of the Year award. It’s a fantastic, family run farm where they pay huge attention to detail, and they thoroughly deserve the title.”
Selecting the eventual winner Jimmy’s findings were:
- A fantastic family run farm with huge attention to detail and control of all costs.
- Cows were clean, comfortable and very content with good % of EXs and VGs.
- Herd health and foot care were paramount.
- Superb calf and young stock rearing gave first calving at 24 months of age.
- An outstanding calving index of 374 days for their 210 Holsteins.
- Great average yields with high butterfat and protein percentages.
- A high % in their fifth and later lactations.
- Very low somatic cell count of 86