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Advantages To Away Wintering

18 October 2017

Advantages To The Livestock Producer

  • No cost for straw bedding if agreed on a dung for straw basis?
  • Access to cheaper feeds eg cereals, etc.
  • Potential to partly outwinter eg on stubbles, grazing catch/cover crops, etc.
  • More housing available at home.
  • Less forage required, higher proportion of grassland grazed.
  • Potential to increase stock numbers.
  • Less work/labour required over winter.
  • Avoids the investment in new buildings to maintain or possibly increase stock numbers.

Benefits To Arable Producer

  • Retaining straw/dung retains nutrients on farm, reducing fertiliser bill.
  • Incorporating dung rather than straight straw speeds availability of nutrients, particularly N, further reducing fertiliser requirements.
  • Justifies grass in rotation to produce winter feed or
  • Rations can be entirely straw based with concentrates based on cheap by-product grain eg light barley, failed bread making wheat, etc.
  • In time will significantly improve soil organic matter content and overall soil fertility.
  • Can utilise fields unsuitable for cropping.
  • Utilises and helps maintain buildings which otherwise might be unused.
  • Provides work for staff over winter. Careful planning can help minimise weekend work to just checking stock.
  • Helps spread tractor/loader overheads.

Basil Lowman,

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