Two well respected competitions in the winter farming calendar will go ahead, almost as normal this year, organisers have announced.
The AgriScot Product Innovation Award and the AgriScot Silage Competition are each now open for entries and the unveiling of the winners is set to be a key attraction among the online seminars planned for Agr-e-Scot day, Wednesday 18th November.
AgriScot Chairman, Robert Neill explains more:
“Everything is coming together for the online events we plan to stage on 18th November. We cannot fully replicate a live, face-to-face AgriScot, but we are confident that our virtual version – unofficially christened Agr-e-Scot – will have something to interest everyone.”
“AgriScot is all about showcasing best practice and forward thinking, this is certainly the ethos behind our Product Innovation Award and also our Silage Competition. It is great, therefore, to announce that we are going to stage both of these competitions for 2020.”
Traditionally, only AgriScot tradestand exhibitors are invited to enter their latest machine, livestock product, piece of software etc into the Product Innovation Award, however for 2020, the net is being cast wider and organisers state that any business with an eligible entry is welcome.
There are 2 broad categories for the award, ‘Animal Health & Husbandry’ and ‘Machinery & Equipment.’ Entries must have been introduced to the market since AgriScot 2019 and will be judged based on a submitted video clip which explains the service / shows the product in action. Ten entries will be shortlisted for judging based on the video submitted and thereafter the views of 2 users/owners of the product entered will also be sought and considered by the judges. Vouchers for advertising in a well-known farming publication will be awarded to the winner and runner up announced on 18th November.
The 2019 Product Innovation Award winner was a software package, CLARIFIDE PLUS, aimed at predicting the future health and profitability of dairy heifers and thus aiding selection. Sticking with the dairy theme, 2018 saw the award go to Deosan Triathlon, a 100% natural teat disinfectant. Organisers are particularly keen to stress that entries are welcome from all farming sectors.
The AgriScot Silage Competition, which is also now open for entries, is once again generously sponsored by Watson Seeds Ltd, providing a prize value of over £5000. The competition has classes for “beef/sheep” and “dairy” clamp silages and also big bale silage. Entries can be from any cut of silage. There is also a special young farmers class for producers under 26 years of age to enter any pit silage.
Competition organiser, Andrew Best, from sponsor, Watson Seeds commented:
“The weather has been consistently inconsistent over the main grass growing and silage making months of 2020. Springtime warmth and sunshine led to significant grass growth on heavier soils with higher moisture contents, but lighter soils and drier areas suffered. In contrast, the latter part of the season, particularly July and August brought wet weather challenges.”
“I guess that silage quality, and indeed quantity, is likely to be extremely varied across the country and indeed even across the different cuts taken on the same farm.”
“With the likelihood of such variability in clamps and bale stacks, the importance of having silage analysed is clear.”
“With an analysis report in front of you, it is not only easier to work out winter feeding requirements and rations, but it is also easy to enter our silage competition – simply by emailing the report to me!”
“Reports will be ranked in order, anonymously, by our long-standing expert judge, Hugh McClymont with the top silages in each category going forward to be judged as a live sample in a special broadcast as part of this year’s online AgriScot.”
The 2019 AgriScot Silage Competition attracted a record number of entries, with the top 3 entries from beef and sheep farms bettering those from dairy farms for the first time in the competitions history.