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The Demo Farm Project

Welcome to the demo farm project page.

The demo farm project has been set up to try and answer some of the questions surrounding on-farm mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions. 

  • What works? 
  • What doesn't?
  • How much will it cost? 
  • Will it fit with my system?
  • Will it work on my soil type?
  • Does carbon footprinting really take that long, and need all that data?
  • Is it worth it?
While we are not promising to find all the answers, we are having a go.

How it works

  • three farmers have agreed to take part
  • Their carbon footprints have been worked out at the beginning
  • The calculations have shown areas where the GHG emissions are high (and these are what we are concentrating on)
  • Events will be run to talk about what we are doing, and discuss the practicalities, (and the numbers)

Where are the farmers and what are they looking at?

Paul Dean, Allgreave Farm, Derbyshire

A dairy farm running 170 milking cows on a spring calving system, milking once per day

Optimises the use of grassland and home grown forage.

GHG hotspots on-farm

Livestock (methane)

Fertiliser applications (Nitrous oxide)

What are we going to focus on?

Making the most of slurries and manures,

Nutrient use efficiency

Event planned: Summer 2016

More information: Why not check out the dairy toolkit pages for some inspiration?

Henry Lucas, Pleasance Farm, Warwickshire

An arable and beef farm growing barley, wheat, beans and rape, and finishing Hereford cattle for Waitrose. 

GHG Hotspots on-farm

Livestock (methane)

Fertiliser applications (Nitrous oxide)

What are we going to focus on?

The use of novel forage crops to feed the cattle (what would grow well on the soil type / conditions,) potentially plantain?

Soil micronutrient supply and arable crop quality, and testing

Nutrient requirements of cover crops.

Event planned: Autumn 2016 

More information: Why not check out the crop and beef pages of the Toolkit?

Dinely Farming Company, Wiltshire

A sheep and arable farm in Wiltshire.

GHG hotspots on-farm

Livestock (methane)

Fuel use (carbon dioxide)

What are we going to focus on?

Efficient sheep production, and the control of parasites in sheep

The use of data with sheep (is it worth collecting data? Can it be linked to production efficiency?)
Event planned : Summer 2016

We recognise its not perfect

We understand that some interventions that are needed will take longer than the project period to assess! However this project is a start at trying to look at some of these factors and how we can practically manage them.