UK, SCOTLAND - A Scottish estate's beef operation has won this year's Morrisons Beef Shorthorn Suckler herd award.
Buccleuch Estate, Bowhill, Selkirkshire has been praised for its excellent management of the beef enterprise within a large estate and the use of Beef Shorthorn to breed suckler replacements for the unit’s 450 cow herd.
Manager at Buccleugh, Sion Williams, demonstrated a "clear vision" of the herds role within the business, said competition judge, Mary Vickers of Eblex.
This was backed up by EID tags, and scrutiny of herd health status and performance and an "impressive attention to detail".
Immediate past president of the Beef Shorthorn Society, Mark Holmes, thanked Morrisons for the sponsorship and underlined the response from commercial producers finding the Beef Shorthorn genetics complement modern suckler herds.
"Add together foraging ability, hardiness, fertility, milkiness, longevity and docility, and breed offers a package of traits which leave cattle that complement their environment and make for functional suckler cow replacements, the bedrock of a sustainable and profitable enterprise," added Mr Holmes.
"In addition, Morrisons native breeds’ scheme has introduced real value to Beef Shorthorn cross steers which are now commanding a premium.”
The runners up are Simon Hare, Barnard Castle, County Durham and Ian Mainwaring, Ellesmere, Shropshire.
The finalists were judged according to technical and financial management, genetics, herd health, marketing and particularly on the performance and impact of Beef Shorthorn within the suckler herd. The winner received £500 cash, while the two finalists were each awarded a £250 voucher towards the purchase of a Beef Shorthorn bull at a society sale.
Mrs Vickers added: “It was great to visit three suckler herds all using Beef Shorthorn breeding to produce quality suckler bred beef in different situations. Each demonstrated a targeted approach to the use of these genetics within their herd aligned to end market requirements.
TheCattleSite News Desk