Based near Ripon in Yorkshire in the UK, Castiles Farm is run by Sean Nicholson, who recently took over management from his father Colin.
Prior to working with LIC, Castiles Farm ran a high input, housed farming system with the cows living inside 12 months of the year, feeding high amounts of concentrate. Sean’s team managed all year round calving and milked their 120 pedigree Holsteins using milking robots, but this system proved expensive, time consuming and inefficient. They also had issues with herd longevity, fertility and milk quality. The farm’s overheads were high, so profits were minimal. They needed a new system that required lower input but delivered the same, if not better, output.
Sean and Colin Nicholson previously considered extending their land and moving to grass, but needed some guidance on the best approach.
Joining the local LIC discussion group run by LIC Consultant Bess Jowsey helped provide the knowledge and confidence to make the transition to a pasture based farming system. At the same time, Bess provided advice to Sean and his team on moving to Autumn block calving using LIC genetics.
Listen to the Sean’s complete story here: