The British Cattle Breeders Club (BCBC) is to host its annual conference on January 21-23, 2013, with speakers including industry experts from around the world, as well as some of the UK’s most forward-thinking beef and dairy cattle producers.
This year’s British Cattle Conference, to be held at the Telford Hotel and Golf Resort in Shropshire, will be chaired by Philip Halhead, a Lancashire dairy farmer who also runs Norbreck Genetics, a company which supplies cattle semen, embryos and livestock, as well as operating as a test centre for Belgian and British Blue AI sires.
Mr Halhead says profitability remains the main focus of the Conference and this theme will prevail throughout the 2.5-day event. The subject matter chosen for the programme ranges from practical production advice, through to the latest scientific developments.
Mr Halhead says:
“We have tried to provide something for everyone; one of our speakers will be explaining how dairy farmers can manipulate diets, to produce milk with fatty acids aimed at improving human health, while another will question whether the pedigree sector is failing the commercial beef producer. We will also hold an ‘Any Questions’ session, where a panel of industry leaders will give their response to questions put to them by delegates.
“Cutbacks in agricultural research and increasing business pressures, caused by high input costs and poor returns on beef and dairy herds, make it more important than ever to provide a forum for the discussion and presentation of new ideas.
“I also feel that as cattle breeders, we all have a common cause, which is to encourage consumers to buy as much home-produced, high quality food as possible. That means we need to work together and pool information, to ensure that our industry has strong foundations for the future.
“The British Cattle Conference is also a social occasion, giving delegates the chance to catch up with each other and exchange their opinions on the issues covered during the programme,” he adds.
Other topics which will come under the spotlight at the Conference include the so-called ‘Primal Diet.’ This food craze has become popular in the USA and is based on unprocessed foods, with an emphasis on beef consumption. News of the diet has already reached the UK and Julia Glotz of ‘The Grocer’ magazine will give a presentation on its potential for influencing the demand for beef in this country.
Meanwhile, Shropshire-based dairy farmer, Andrew Higgins will outline the management of his herd, which has moved up from modest yields, to three times a day milking and an average per cow of more than 12,000kgs.
The British Cattle Conference is open to non-members, although anyone with an interest in the UK cattle industry is encouraged to join the BCBC; membership is £25 a year and includes a discount on conference attendance fees. To book a place and for help with arranging accommodation, please contact BCBC secretary, Lesley Lewin on 01409 241579 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
More detailed information about the BCBC and the British Cattle Conference can be found on the website, www.cattlebreeders.org.uk
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