Farmers urged to start planning winter feed and bedding strategy

Forage Aid Trustees are urging farmers around the United Kingdom to start forward planning how they can manage and build winter forage and bedding stocks following the cold, wet spring of 2021.

The charity has been receiving reports of shorter stocks of straw in livestock areas, however forage yields do seem to be holding up considering the poor start to the spring.

Forage Aid founder and chairman Andrew Ward MBE said:

“Our Trustees have been monitoring forage and bedding stocks in their own areas.

Whilst the results are anecdotal, we do have growing evidence that forage stocks are looking better than expected, however stocks of straw are low and prices are rising.

“Our experience shows that these conditions normally lead to problems later in the year.

“Livestock farmers have found it challenging to build forage and bedding stocks over the last few years as droughts, wet weather and cold spells have all challenged the ability to grow and conserve forage.

“Forage Aid have found it increasingly difficult to encourage donations of forage, and where trustees have agreed to support an application for support the charity has found itself in a position of having to purchase forage and straw rather than rely on donations.

“We are encouraging livestock farmers to start planning for the next winter and how they can conserve enough forage to see them through to next spring,” he cocncluded.