Gala venue for Grazing Group

Farmers attending the next Grazing Group meeting at Galashiels will have the chance to benefit from some practical and interesting research that grazing expert Philip Creighton has undertaken in Ireland.

The meeting, which is free to attend and organised by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), will take place on March 4.

The aim of the grazing groups is to increase kg of liveweight produced per hectare through better utilisation of grass. The groups have been meeting regularly to try and achieve this and Mr Creighton plans to use case studies from commercial farms in Ireland at these forthcoming meetings to show how farmers in Scotland can improve their profits by making better grass.

Mr Creighton is a graduate of in Animal and Crop Production at University College Dublin and established the Grassland Research and Innovation Centre in Galway in April 2011 which focuses on sheep and cattle grassland systems research.

He said: “Although there is more upland grazing in Scotland and there may not be the same production potential in some areas, the principles of grassland management are the same and can be adapted to suit different types of farms. Soil fertility and weather have a big part to play in identifying how much grass a farm can grow but long-term accumulation of information should lead to identifying the best stocking rates to maximise output.”

Many farmers are considering starting grass measuring, rotational grazing and experimenting with increased stocking rates and Mr Creighton will highlight some case studies where changes in grassland management have been successful.

The meeting begins at 10am and lunch will be provided. For further information and to register a place visit www.qmscotland.co.uk/events or phone 0131 472 4040.