Last month’s UK Dairy Day held at Telford International Centre attracted its higher attendance in the four years since the annual show organised by Holstein UK  started.

There were 8,422 visitors, an 8% increase on 2016 in the first year with no competing RABDF event at the National Exhibition Centre, with 310 trade exhibitors and 186 live cattle entered for competitions.  The organiser claims the September timing provides dairy businesses across the UK with a platform to communicate to a targeted audience when farmers are taking business decisions ahead of the winter housing period.

Herdwatch won the New Product Award from a field of 12 entries for its innovative Farm Management App; with IceRobotics’ CowAlert highly commended for its Automated Lameness Detection and Dairy Spares for the Trusti Tuber product. The best large trade stand was ADF Milking; with Vetoquinol winning best medium-sized stand and the best small stand award going to Hingerose. 

“The energy and atmosphere felt at this year’s UK Dairy Day really does demonstrate the strength of our industry and positive future ahead,” said event director Sue Cope. “With recent milk price increases, farmers felt encouraged to look at new innovations at the show and plan for production.

“As UK Dairy Day grows we are conscious of adding new elements to the show to keep it fresh and innovative and at the forefront of British farming. This year the UK Dairy Day app was downloaded by hundreds of people and the introduction of the NBDC Breed Village and Calf Rearing Zone were extremely popular.”

The 2018 event is planned for Wednesday September 12th at Telford. Dairy Day survey reveals milking optimism.

● Herdwatch surveyed farmer visitors collectively milking over 16,000 cows at UK Dairy Day and found 88% to be confident in theirj future, despite concerns about trade deals and farm payments.

Among the biggest concerns were milk price and labour shortages, with immigration a major Government discussion point. They were also worried about consumer perceptions of milk as an unhealthy drink, and the rise of non-dairy “milks”, with some anxiety about the growth in the vegan food market and aggressive marketing campaigns.

James Greevy, head of business and product development at Herdwatch, commented: “The level of confidence is a little surprising, especially considering the amount of uncertainty that there is over Brexit. But 52% are looking at boosting cow numbers moving forward.