Business Briefing August 2019

Welcome to the August edition of the Farm Consultancy Group Business Briefing Newsletter.   In this issue you will find articles on Improved Grass Breeding, Dry Matter Intake, Weigh In! Hedge Cutting Derogation, FCG Summer Tour, It’s All About Drainage! and many more....

 

Improved Grass Breeding on Dairy Farms - Cled Richards (Carmarthen)

Our office in Carmarthenshire deals predominantly with grass based dairy farmers in West Wales. We benchmark and review the performance of these businesses with financial and physical KPI’s.  Two common physical KPI’s we use, are litres per ha and per cow from forage.  Both these KPI’s are typically driven by grass Dry Matter production (although influenced by several other variables).  The yields read more...

Dry Matter Intake is King! - Mark Yearsley (Sherborne)

Increasing dry matter intake in dairy cows is a measure of success for any dairy farmer and nutritionist, and these five points provide a basic platform towards this goal. Read more...

Weigh In! - Gerard Finnan (Sherborne)

With 40% grants available now under the Countryside Productivity Small Grant Scheme https://www.gov.uk/guidance/countryside-productivity-scheme#round-2 which closes on the 4th September, there is no excuse for livestock farmers to be still guessing the weight of their cattle!  Read more...

Hedge Cutting Derogation – Apply Now! - Cari Beard (Chippenham)

Cross Compliance rules prevent the cutting or trimming of hedges until 1st September.

However, if you are sowing Oilseed Rape or Temporary Grass in August, you may be eligible for a Hedge Cutting Derogation. This allows you to cut or trim hedges from the 1st August in specific parcels. Read more...

FCG Summer Tour - Charles Holt (Lincoln)

Every year we have a short summer study tour. This year we went to Suffolk & Norfolk and saw a number of fascinating farms (and I admit, a whisky distillery – it wasn’t all work). We spent an excellent morning at the Euston Estate, where we saw how the management team (led by Andrew Blenkiron) has turned a loss-making substantial farm business into a profitable one,  Read more...

It’s All About Drainage! – Wesley Habershon (Chippenham)

Milk from forage, forage grown/hectare, healthy soil and removing compaction are all linked especially on heavy soils. Water is imperative to growth but too much leads to poor root structure and less tonnes grown/ha. Read more...

Are You Over, Under or Just Right? - Phil Cooper (Sherborne)

It continues to amaze me how often I visit farms that have not calibrated their parlour feeders or checked the weigh cells on the feeder wagon. This should be part of the regular routine just like replacing the cluster liners or servicing your tractor. Read more...

Farm Sustainability – Gerard Finnan (Sherborne)

Farm Sustainability is a term that is being mentioned a lot recently by politicians, environmentalists, farmers, researchers and the press. But what does this mean? For a farmer it means passing on a viable business to the next generation, but it is not just financial viability. Read more...

Alternative Finance Solutions – Ed Warren (Sherborne)

As a broker of finance, we don’t just deal with mainstream banking as we get asked to finance the unfinanceable sometimes and we need to be creative. One such situation presented itself recently where a landowner who is heavily borrowed is looking to get planning permission to develop a plot of land into residential properties. Read more...

Is Safety the Key to Sustainability? - Cari Beard (Chippenham)

British farmers are renowned for their innovation and ability to constantly improve, grow and develop their businesses. However, there is one key thing that the industry has still not managed to master… health and safety! Read more...

The Role of Beef Production – Wesley Habershon (Chippenham)

I did look up the meaning of Omnivore too as recently I’ve been confused….
“Omnivore, an animal or person that eats a variety of food of both plant and animal origin. The hominidae, including humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans, are also omnivores”. So that’s cleared that up. Read more...

Landlord’s Insurance – Loophole? - Charles Holt (Lincoln)

Many farmers and rural business owners have surplus properties that they rent out. Some have made it a substantial part of their business portfolio. However, it appears that people who rent out property may not be insured for ‘illegal activities.’ After all, Read more...

Posted in Business Briefing.