2012 AgriScot Silage Competition Winners
It will come as no surprise to many that historically Ayrshire has led the race in the annual AgriScot silage competition.
In contrast to 2011 when it was pipped at the post for the top spot in both bale and clamp categories, this year the county achieved first place in each, despite the challenges posed by the weather.
Closely followed by entrants from Lancashire, Cumbria and Orkney, Mauchline and Auchincruive were victorious. John McAuslin, Farm Manager at Auchincruive was crowned winner of the First Cut Clamp category whilst W&A Watson of Muir Farm, Mauchline claimed the Big Bale competition.
The First Cut Clamp category averaged 11.64ME and the Big Bale averaged 10.9ME, with dry matter sitting at 36.3 and 45.9 respectively.
Dry matter averages are higher in the First Cut Clamp category than they have been in the last five years which is perhaps a surprise for this year. Crude Protein levels might have been expected to be poorer this year but are in fact only a little lower than in previous years.
Andrew Best, from sponsors Watson Seeds, said: “This year, we have once again seen exceptional quality from all of our entries, despite a challenging summer.
“We have seen high dry matter and ME figures which I must admit was a bit of a surprise to me. One thing that is obvious is that those who took advantage of conditions and went for an early cut had their decisions rewarded.
“We are once again grateful to our highly respected Judge Hugh McClymont, farm manager at the Crichton Royal Farm, Dumfries and the facilities he helped provide for us. Hugh provides us with exceptional expertise and ensures that the competition has consistency over the years. He has commented to me that he was particularly impressed with entries this year and found the short-listing process harder than ever.
“At Watson’s Seeds we are certainly extremely keen to continue supporting the Silage Competition. Silage is still the most cost effective feed on farm, giving as good, if not better quality as bought in cake. In my view, this should always be championed.”