Why Andrew would be an effective mentor:
- Andrew is a soil health enthusiast who has recently completed a Soil Health Masterclass with Nicole Masters. He has been concentrating on practices that protect soils, increase soil biology and that reduce the reliance on external inputs such as chemical fertilisers. This has led to a 60% reduction of the use of chemical nitrogen in the last three years, with notable changes in cow health. Andrew has also participated in the advanced Prosper from Pasture professional development programme.
- Andrew and his family farm 320 spring-calving British Friesians, plus replacements and breeding bulls, on 400 acres, plus an additional 75 acres on short-term arrangement for silage-making. The farm has also diversified, and has one self-catering holiday let; it has recently installed solar panels and batteries, working towards the end goal of being self-sufficient.
- After graduating with a first-class honors degree in Agriculture in 2009, Andrew returned to the family farm to take over a large portion of the farm management. Since then, the farm has made a move to a nine-week spring block calving system.
- Andrew believes that knowledge transfer and open conversations between farmers is key. As part of his local discussion group, Andrew annually benchmarks his dairy enterprise to help measure farm performance.
- Moor Farm was a Farming Connect demonstration site that concentrated on farm profitability and business resilience, building a business fit for the future and encouraging high-level farmer-to-farmer knowledge exchange and information sharing.
- With holistic management training from the Savory Institute via its UK hub, Andrew is aware that farmers are managing complex ecosystems, and should manage no single element in isolation by considering the effect on the four ecosystem processes. One of the principles of holistic management is to consider an issue in the whole, and to find the root cause, rather treating the symptoms.
Current Farm Business:
- 400 acres, plus an additional 75 acres on short-term arrangement for silage-making
- 320 spring-calving British Friesians plus replacements and breeding bulls,
- self-catering holiday let, solar panels and batteries, working towards the end goal of being self-sufficient.
- 2022 - Soil Health Masterclass with Nicole Masters
- 2020/2021 - Holistic management with 3LM (Savoury Institute)
- 2009 - BSc (hons) Agriculture (1st Class)
Top tips for business success
“I can see so much benefit to understanding and nurturing soils on your farm and the knock-on effects in terms of production, animal health and margins, and I would like to help and encourage others to have the confidence to make these changes on their own farm.”