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HUDDLESTONE HOLSTEINS


Forward-thinking dairy farmers Tim and Marion Gue continuously strive to achieve efficiency within their 410-head Huddlestone herd. In a business that utilises facts and science, genomics is a key tool used to identify their most profitable females. Izzy Whittaker went to find out more


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our miles from the south east coast in the small, unassuming town of Steyning in West Sussex lies an innovative and profit-focused enterprise dedicated to creating a sustainable future within our dairy sector. Arriving to glorious sunshine, afternoon duties are in full swing on this busy 410-head dairy farm which also includes 330 North Country mule sheep and 700 acres of arable. The 32 point rotary is doing the second of its three daily shifts, the sawdust bedding machine is whizzing round the 500 cubicles whilst the cows are in transit, the farm’s sheep are being foot dipped and a new starter to the dairy team is being shown the ropes. This is not a ‘traditional’ story that shares generations of thriving dairy farming, this anything but ordinary endearing account features a pioneering, self-starting family that has used sharp business-acumen to secure a buoyant position within the industry. Tim is a second generation dairy farmer and has grown the prosperous business handed over by his father to span a total 2,050 acres. Really switched-on farmers, Tim and his wife Marion run a very tight


82 THE JOURNAL AUGUST 2014


operation and their top Huddlestone herd is managed to a ‘T’. Wanting to stay within the top 20% of producers in the UK, Tim believes it is important to focus on all aspects of the business rather than just one particular area. “Whether it’s milling wheat, sheep or cows we have to remain profitable. I aim to keep within the top 20% – it keeps us motivated and the pressure on as there are so many good producers about today it’s not an easy task,” says Tim. Just a few minutes into our


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