Mole Valley Farmers launches new service to help farmers treat grass as a crop

Farmer owned business, Mole Valley Farmers have launched a new Grassland Agronomy Service to help producers maximise grassland efficiencies and productivity.

The Grassland Agronomy Service has been developed to compliment the company’s existing crop nutrition and management services to provide farmers with a whole farm approach to grassland management.

As part of the service, developed in conjunction with Dow AgroSciences and Agrovista, producers will be able to draw on the advice of a network of Mole Valley Farmers BASIS qualified agronomists.

Mole Valley Forage Service’s agronomist, Mark Shaw says the aim as a farmer owned business is to provide the support, service and expertise needed to help farmers get the most from grass by treating it as a crop.

“Grass is by far the biggest single crop grown in the UK, making up 43% of the 17.2m ha of agricultural land, yet only 7% of grassland receives agronomic support each year. Most farmers wouldn’t dream of growing other crops without getting vital support to maximise its potential,” he says.

With farmers facing increasing market pressures, together with challenges associated with CAP reform, improving efficiencies and making the most of the land they have has never been more important.

Mark says one way to help safeguard businesses is to place greater emphasis on home produced forage – something that fits with Mole Valley Farmers’ Forage for Profit initiative.

“Correctly grown grass is the cheapest feed available to farmers so it makes economic sense to maximise what you can grow,” he comments.

The Grassland Agronomy Service team can offer farm specific advice right through from soil management to seed selection, fertiliser choice, agronomy and ensiling.

Mark also stresses that the team is committed to giving general agronomic management advice, rather than just being focused on selling product.

“It’s important to think about cultural and chemical control of weeds, so we will walk the farm, look at weed burdens around tracks and slurry pits and offer management advice. We can then suggest the most suitable chemical for a specific situation,” he says.

>> To discuss how the Grassland Agronomy Service team can help you, Tel: 01769 576405

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