Sustainable Dairy Award Winner
Buckwell Lodge in Leicestershire
VetPartners launched the awards to recognise the achievements made by farmers across the UK when it comes to improving the sustainability of their systems, while continuing to prioritise animal health and productivity. Buckwell Lodge won the Sustainable Dairy Farm of the Year category in recognition of the adoption of innovative approaches to farming which benefit the environment and the community, as well as making good business sense.
Marcus, David and Sam Hunt from Buckwell Lodge farm, were nominated for the award by their vet, Alba Moran, from Cross Counties Farm Vets.
“The Hunts always put sustainability at the root of how they farm,” says Ms Moran. “They prioritise soil health, generate 85% of their electricity using a wind turbine and engage with the local community by running farm tours.”
Ms Moran explains that one of the biggest changes made by the Hunt family is use of a robotic milking system. “The robots have allowed the Hunts to implement a rotational grazing system.
“The cows are now provided with three different paddocks per day. After coming in for milking they are sent to a different paddock, which keeps them moving around and always grazing the freshest grass.”
She adds that the Hunts take a proactive approach to prioritising the health and welfare of their animals. “The calves are reared in the fields, suckled on either their own mother or an adopted mother. This means they have few problems with respiratory disease, which can be a common problem in young calves.”