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Three “top-class” dairy farms have been unveiled as finalists in the running for the Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year Award.

The farms, in Aberdeenshire, East Ayrshire and Kirkcudbrightshire have each received a visit from the award assessors, who will now decide which will receive the title at AgriScot on 21st November.

East Logan, Castle Douglas, where the Yates family and their team milk their renowned 280 cow herd of pedigree Holsteins and 17 Jerseys 3 times per day, is vying for the award alongside Laigh Tarbeg at Cumnock where Alastair Watson farms in partnership with his parents and the help of 2 staff and 5 robot milkers.  The third finalist farm is Middleton of Rora, Peterhead, where Bruce and Jane Mackie and their team have diversified to launch their own yoghurt brand and are in the process of converting to organic milk production from their 220 dairy cows.

Convenor of the award, and AgriScot Director, Gilmour Lawrie, himself an award-winning dairy farmer commented:

“It is absolutely fantastic to have such top-class finalists for this year’s dairy farm of the year award.”

“East Logan is hugely respected for the quality of its cattle and dairy performance, evident in the show ring and from success in various herd competitions. Laigh Tarbeg and Middleton of Rora are both utilising the latest technology and kit to make the job as efficient as possible, and all three farms are a real credit to the farmers and were a joy to visit.”

“The award aims to showcase best practice and innovative thinking to the wider industry, and I am confident that all 3 finalist farms can do that.”

“The dairy sector has certainly not been without its challenges in recent years and the way that our 3 finalists have adapted or improved to meet and overcome such challenges is inspirational.”

“Any of them would be worthy recipients of the Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year title for 2018.”

The Scottish Dairy Farm of the Year award is sponsored by CowAlert, the fertility, health and welfare monitoring system for dairy cows developed by Edinburgh based animal technologists, Ice Robotics.

The award is part of the stable of AgriScot farm of the year awards, each of which was opened for entry by farmers and nominations from the wider farming community over the past few months.

Gilmour Lawrie continued:

“We are grateful to everyone who put farms forward for the 2018 dairy farm of the year award.”

“It looks set to be a highlight of the day at AgriScot, when the 3 finalists take their place beside our arable, beef and sheep finalists at 12 noon, in the main ring, at for the special presentation ceremony of certificates and, ultimately, the announcement of which farms will take the title!”

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