A recent survey conducted by AHDB reveals that farmers are planning for their winter forage supplies earlier than last year. Sixty-six per cent of farmers who responded to the survey had good forage stocks, and only 31% were short of grass silage. Fewer farmers have forward bought straw compared to last year, although they have concerns for future straw availability, price and managing cash flows.
Charlie Russell is Estate Factor and Farms Manager for Glenapp – a rural business near Stranraer where one of the challenges is usually to cope with over 1,500 mm annual rainfall, and this year turned into coping with a six-week drought.
Better production and utilisation of grass and forage provides an opportunity to reduce costs and optimise profits on any livestock farm, and the key to success is to learn from other farmers’ experiences and expertise.
Well-managed grassland provides the cheapest feed throughout the year, either as grazed grass or silage. Making the most of grass on your farm offers a huge opportunity to increase profits in a sustainable way.