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FARMERS WEEKLY
AWARDS 2009
Congratulations to two Holstein UK members selected as fi nalists
in the Farmers Weekly Dairy Farmer of the Year Competition 2009
JANE AND ROB TARGETT, SCOTT BAGWELL,
CARYMOOR HOLSTEINS FIELDBARNFARM HOLSTEINS
Until recently, Jane was Scott has truly worked his way up the
Chairman of Holstein farming ladder, starting as a general farm
South West. She and
worker at the age of 16, then relief milker,
Rob run the Carymoor
herd manager and assistant farm manager,
herd near Castle Cary
before fi nally securing the “top job” as
in Somerset and have
manager at Field Barn Farm in 2007.
almost 200 cows in milk,
Since then his main focus has been
producing an average of 10,150 litres a year, and 280
on expansion. The herd numbers 300,
followers.
giving 2.7m litres a year. The aim is to increase this to 325 next
Pedigree breeding and tight cost control are Jane and
year with sales of 3m litres. To this end, there has been a lot
of recent investment at the farm, including a new 1400sqm
Rob’s main objectives, the breeding side being Jane’s area
youngstock shed, an extra 100 cow cubicles, an extension to the
of responsibility. “Our breeding goals continue to evolve,
parlour and a new 4200cu m slurry silo.
with a greater emphasis on health traits and longevity,”
she says. “A great example of this combination is Prelude
Scott’s cost control measures include the investment of a rain
Pet Excellent 91-3E, a cow of 14 years, who has produced
water harvester and tight slurry management. “This has led to
10 natural calves and over 130,000kg of low cell-count
big savings on fertiliser costs, as we have applied no artifi cial
milk without any fuss or special treatment.”
fertiliser so far this year,” says Scott.
Costs are kept to a minimum in several ways. Last
Large amounts of concrete have been laid around the
summer the Targetts sunk a borehole and now use
farmyard, which promotes cleanliness and has helped reduce
lameness and other cow health problems.
the same amount of mains water in a week that they
previously used in a day. They have pre-booked electricity Once the farm’s own fi eldwork is done, Scott’s team is then
for the next four years and, anticipating price rises, Rob
available for contract work to other farms, to earn extra
recently bought six months’ worth of red diesel for 39.5p/
income and make effi cient use of equipment.
litre. Farm building work is done by the farm labourers
Another initiative has been to invest in Heatime - three cows
during winter and veterinary costs are kept down by
have already been saved. Scott has also signifi cantly reduced
teaming up with nine other farmers and collectively
the rate of mastitis in the herd, getting the cell count down
negotiating a contract with the Delaware Vet Group.
from 300 to less than 150 in two years.
Jane and Rob aim to sell their milk at the highest price The herd is producing about 9,000 litres a cow of 4.2%
possible and achieve this either by changing processor or butterfat, 3.4% protein milk and the lack of a premium milk
adapting their production to maximise value. They have price makes it all the more commendable that the herd is fi fth
recently increased their supply quality by shifting to a
in Kite Consulting’s South-Western league table for margin
level of lower yields in favour of higher milk solids. Cell
over concentrate. This stood at 20.91p/litre in 2008. All milk
counts are consistently in the 160,000 – 170,000 range.
is sold to Dairy Crest under a liquid contract, picking up fat,
This has led them to winning the Waitrose contract at a
volume and level profi le bonuses.
top price, averaging 28.79p/litre last milk year.
High yielders are kept indoors full time, while mediums and
Having invested £115,000 on upgrading and increasing
lows get time out at grass. Cows are served anytime after 42
cubicle numbers in 2007, and £45,000 on youngstock
days post-calving, though Scott says this is driven by body
condition. Conception rate last year reached 83%.
housing and parlour upgrades in 2008, the business is
about to embark on the next phase of expansion. The Scott’s aim is to double the yield to 6m litres if enough
aim is to add another 5000sq ft of cow housing, a new
land becomes available to comply with NVZ restrictions and
28:28 de Laval parlour, dairy and collecting yard, with all
to grow enough forage. The Farmers Weekly judges were
investment fi nanced out of profi t.
particularly impressed by Scott’s achievements and remarked
that “the farm was immaculate, refl ecting Scott’s attention to
The Targett’s have a mission statement “to achieve the
detail and meticulous planning.”
highest standards of animal health, milk quality, staff
The winners will be named at the Farmers W
.
eekly awards ceremony at London’s
satisfaction and environmental responsibility”. All these are
Grosvenor House hotel on 8 October. Tickets to attend the dinner are available
met in full. What the Farmers Weekly judges particularly
through www.farmersweeklyawards.co.uk
liked: “Jane and Rob run an extremely profi table and
driven business. We were impressed by their knowledge,
Acknowledgements to author Philip Clarke and photographer Alexandra Joseph
commitment and work ethic.”
at Farmers Weekly
THE JOURNAL OCTOBER 2009 91
e5-09 Farmers Weekly Awards 2009.indd 1 22/09/2009 10:34:32
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