The 6th Annual Cream Awards, organised by British Dairying magazine, was held on 6th February, bringing together 400 guests to celebrate the best of the dairy industry.
The aim of the prestigious annual Cream Awards is to showcase some of Britain’s brightest and best working individuals and companies working in this farming sector.
The awards have grown in stature year-on-year, and for the second year in a row were held at the Chesford Grange in Kenilworth on the night of the annual DairyTech event at Stoneleigh Park.
LIC agreed to sponsor the High Fertility award, and was delighted with the calibre of entrants who came from across the UK and Southern Ireland.
Judging was hard, but in the end Sarah Baker from Gnatts Farm came out on top, The judges said: “Sarah has pushed hard to deliver impressive results, understanding that every extra day in milk means more money in the bank. She is continually trying to improve her figures, with great care to improve fertility levels.”
Pasture to Profit consultant Piers Badnell added that Sarah received the award based on her attention to detail and pursuit of excellence in a difficult season in terms of weather. Her six-week in-calf rate was 80%, with the three-week submission rate at 90% with 14 days to 50% calved. The empty rate was 8.95% on 12 weeks which was 3.95% higher than her previous year and was attributable to weather. Conception rate was 68%.
“Her pursuit of excellence continues. All parts of the business are recorded and Sarah analyses the herd data continually to identify the next gain to be had. She’s a very worthy winner.”
The judges were looking for a dairy farmer with exceptional results and one where every effort was being made to hit the six-week calving interval that’s the aim for New Zealand dairy farmers.
Bearing this in mind, the runner up was Steffan Richards who milks 2600 cows in Llangynog, Carmarthen, Wales and who consistently has a 21-day pregnancy rate of 32% with a calving interval of 378 days.
LIC had a table of 10 guests at the dinner, and those joining included Chris Kebbell, Chris Kebbell, Minister for Primary Industries, New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade; Gaynor Wellwood, Director, Mole Valley; Tim Byrne, Managing Director, AbacusBio; Mark Oliver, Regional Sales Manager, UK, Denmark & Sweden, Gallagher; and Alastair Grizzell, Director, Map of Agriculture.