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Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year

Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year 2023 Results

Coopon Carse Farm – WINNER

Finalists:

Linns Farm

Mackie’s of Scotland – Westertown Farm

 

The AgriScot Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year is Sponsored by GEA

Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year Sponsored by GEA

Coopon Carse Farm, Dumfries and Galloway

Coopon Carse was brought in 1983 by Mr. Wijnand Pon at that time it was a beef and sheep farm. In April 1984 milk production started with 160 commercial cows at the same time 70 pedigree calves were imported from the Netherlands to start the pedigree herd. Now milking 430 cows through seven A5 Lely robots installed in 2020 employing 7 full-time and 2 part-time staff. The cows are producing over 12000 litres 4.17 fat and 3.45 protein with a preg rate of 28%. Coopon Carse is made up of heavy clay so ideally suited to grass growing with its high rainfall of 1430 mm a year. Almost all field work is done with their own staff.

2022 Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year

Peeblesshire-based Colin of Blyth Farms runs Blythbridge Holsteins in partnership with his family, milking 540 cows daily, using 10 Lely A5 robots.

The business has been built up over the past three generations and more recently saw the completion of a new dairy complex, constructed with the aim of maximising the potential of the Holstein breed.

The herd participates in weekly vet inspections to monitor fertility, and regular foot trimming, along with foot washers on the robots, has eliminated the need for antibiotics to treat lameness. This May, Blyth Farm opened its gates to the public and welcomed over 750 farming and non-farming visitors to explore the new dairy facility and to see other aspects of the farm.

The family are also supporters of RHET, hosting school visits on the farm and regularly welcome international groups.

After months of deliberation and a host of impressive farms to choose from, the finalists for this year’s AgriScot Dairy Farm of the Year award have now been announced. 

Allan Campbell, Cally Mains Farming Ltd 

Extending over 240ha, Cally Mains Farm, in Gatehouse of Fleet, is a family business run by Allan, Janice and Robin Campbell and together they milk 500 cows, bringing on 350 plus youngstock. All cattle, a mix of Holstein and some Jerseys, are housed indoors and milked three times a day, by a team of four full-time members of staff and three part-time milkers.  

This autumn, the Campbell’s will complete building a new fresh cow shed for 145 cows with an emphasis on cow comfort. They have a strict health policy in place, with a focus on maintaining a healthy environment for cows, youngstock and calves and work closely with vets to minimise antibiotic usage. The Campbell’s run a closed herd, with a weekly veterinary visit to monitor herd fertility and monthly health monitoring by their nutritionist.   

Willie Fleming, Hillhead Farm 

Lockerbie-based dairy farmer Willie Fleming farms in partnership with his parents, Robert and Margaret, and has grown the dairy herd from 100 cattle, when they first moved to Hillhead 20 years ago, to a herd of 365 Holstein cows today.   

Four years ago, they installed six Lely A5 robots which has led to significant improvements in milk production and overall cattle health. Their milking business is complemented by an elite genetics programme, with a focus on producing high yielding, efficient cows, who have a reduced carbon footprint. They have been using High PLI sires with the emphasis on producing progeny suited to robotic milking and with a longer lifespan.   

Willie and his family are big supporters of RHET, hosting regular school visits and Willie is an active champion of the dairy sector, making videos for his social media, to educate and entertain the public about dairy. 

Colin Laird, Blyth Farms 

Peeblesshire-based Colin Laird runs Blythbridge Holsteins in partnership with his family, milking 540 cows daily, using 10 Lely A5 robots. The business has been built up over the past three generations and more recently saw the completion of a new dairy complex, constructed with the aim of maximising the potential of the Holstein breed.  

The herd participates in weekly vet inspections to monitor fertility, and regular foot trimming, along with foot washers on the robots, has eliminated the need for antibiotics to treat lameness. This May, Blyth Farm opened its gates to the public and welcomed over 750 farming and non-farming visitors to explore the new dairy facility and to see other aspects of the farm. The family are also supporters of RHET, hosting school visits on the farm and regularly welcome international groups.  

The winner of the 2022 Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year will be announced at AgriScot on 16 November.

 

Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year 2021

 

Holehouse Farm, Kilbirnie, Ayrshire was announced as the recipient of the coveted Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year award, at a special AgriScot presentation ceremony today (Wednesday 9th February).

Farmed by the Logan family, Holehouse supports 280 pedigree Holstein cows in a new, modern dairy complex as part of a wider 1930Ha livestock operation. A significant percentage of the cows are red and white’s and the overall herd averages 10,300ltr per annum.

Gilmour Lawrie, convenor of the award on behalf of AgriScot commented:

“It was a pleasure to visit the Logan family at Holehouse as part of the assessment visit. Everything about the premises at Holehouse is clean and well-appointed and is a credit to the family and their team. We saw happy, content, comfortable animals and were in no doubt of the high welfare standards from birth to parlour.”

“Holehouse exemplifies the use of modern dairy practices, embraced by the entire team, alongside acute attention to detail.  The assessors were particularly impressed by the use of on-site renewable energy production to lower the carbon footprint of the farm.”

Announcing the award, Douglas Armstrong of sponsors CowAlert from IceRobotics  said:

“I believe the standards were very high this year. I would like to congratulate all 3 finalists and in particular Holehouse Farms, the 2021 Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year.”

Alistair Logan, from Holehouse Farms, commented after receiving the accolade:

“We are delighted! It’s a very welcome and pleasant surprise to receive this award. We are an all-family farm; everyone works so hard and it’s lovely to have this recognition!”

There were 2 other finalists in the running for the award, East Brackenridge at Strathaven, farmed by the Neilson family and Queenscairn at Kelso farmed by Robert Shanks. Each was presented with a Finalist certificate by Cabinet Secretary, Mairi Gougeon, who stated:

“AgriScot is about innovation, knowledge exchange and best practice for the farming industry so I am delighted to be able to recognise all the finalists and recipients of the AgriScot farm of the year awards.

“The finalists – across all of the categories – have been selected following a process of nomination, because each of their farms and farming businesses is thought to be trail blazing, innovative, or simply just an example of a farm being operated to its optimum potential. I commend each of the finalists, across the sector categories and hope that they will all be willing to share in their secrets to help others – including new entrants – learn and thrive.”

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