Straight-Talking Seminars Set for Beef Expo 2012

UK - Farmers are to join noted industry speakers to add a practical perspective in seminar sessions covering everything from bovine TB to technical developments in the grading and pricing of beef carcases at next week’s Beef Expo 2012, at the Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcestershire, on May 24th.
calendar icon 16 May 2012
clock icon 2 minute read

Paul Westaway, Beef Expo Chairman, says the seminar sessions – running from 10am to 3.30pm – will be major attraction at the event, organised by the National Beef Association and supported by Lloyds TSB Agriculture as major sponsors.

He says: “We have a huge wealth of experience among speakers, ensuring visitors get up-to-date advice from experts and a practical perspective from farmers like themselves on the ground.

“We have to accept and adapt to change. Many beef farms already balance the demands of different parties to make the business pay. With that in mind we are delighted to have Poul Christensen of Natural England to start the day looking at how to manage the balance between productivity and land stewardship.”

With cattle prices currently creating much debate, the future of carcase grading and pricing will be discussed. Talking about Northern Ireland’s experience, assurance officer Charlotte Moore and farmer Stephen Heenan will provide visitors with their perspectives on Video Imaging Analysis and how it has been received.

Mr Westaway predicts that a big crowd-puller will also be the TB session, which will focus on the practical side of the disease and minimising the spread from cattle-to-cattle and badgers-to-cattle. Bill Harper, NBA TB Committee Chairman, will look at current and future cattle controls, while Anthony Pope and Sophie Jones of the South West TB Advisory Group will look at badger behavior and top tips for reducing contact.

“Animal health is a real boiling pot of contention at the moment with Defra’s plans to cut back its animal health budget, from which bovine TB is a huge drain,” explains Mr Westaway. “We can expect some firm, frank discussion about plans for farmers to become involved in ‘creative’ solutions to tackle the disease.”

In the dedicated Animal Health and Production seminar area, two practical sessions will look at out-wintering cattle and tightening calving periods, while three dedicated disease-based discussions will cover Schmallenberg, coccidiosis and neospirosis.

“As a world-leading beef industry we must prepare to meet future challenges. The programme of speakers will hopefully stand all those participating in the seminar sessions in good stead,” says Mr Westaway.

The seminar programme and all event information can be found at

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