- 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, email@example.com
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