The Award for Grassland Farmer of the Year goes to...

The Award for Grassland Farmer of the Year goes to...

Friday, September 9, 2016

Eurig Jenkins, a dairy farmer from Pentrefelin Farm near Lampeter, Ceredigion has won the BGS Grassland Farmer of the Year competition. The announcement was made at our awards evening held in Belfast last week, jointly hosted with Ulster Grassland Society and kindly sponsored by Yara and DLF.
Eurig's 400 strong herd of New Zealand Friesian cows, managed under a spring-block calving and grazing focused system took him to the top of the 2016 competition, with judging criteria encompassing grassland and forage policy, grazing and forage management, livestock production and welfare and how the farm approaches environmental issues. When presenting the award BGS President John Bax commented that ‘whilst it is always a regret that there can only be one overall winner, I am delighted to reveal that this year’s award once again goes to a grassland producer who truly demonstrates what's capable of being achieved with a focus on grass and forage in UK farming’.  
The two other exceptional entrants who had succeeded through the tough regional rounds to become finalists in the competition were also at the celebration in Belfast. Richard Fryer, a dairy farmer from Cheshire and William Ingram, a sheep farmer from Aberdeenshire recognised their superb achievement in making the final three. Speaking after the announcement Richard commented on the benefits of entering the competition for his business, including ‘an enjoyable evening away from the farm with other progressive producers’. 
Head Judge, Glasnant Morgan summarised the difficult decision made by the judging team saying that all three finalists had strong pros in their favour, in the end however, it came down to picking the winner whose farm had closed all the gaps through which expenditure can leak by focusing on utilising home produced grass and forage in the most efficient ways, ensuring the business could weather external pressures – an ethos that all farmers need to be aware of.
The Jenkins’ farm in Mid-Wales demonstrates not only excellence in grazing focused dairying, but other aspects relevant to all livestock sectors also, including adoption of new technology for nutrient management and energy saving and is an example of how to sustain good working relationships on a family holding.
Next year's competition will begin with local rounds in spring, please continue to check the BGS website and publications for details of the 2017 timeline. To see more about the competition click here
The 2016 Finalists with BGS President John Bax (from left; Carole and William Ingram, Eurig Jenkins, John Bax, Richard and Elizabeth Fryer).


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