April 2014: Holstein NI hosts 15th AGM at Moira
Members of Holstein NI gathered recently in Moira for the club’s 15th Annual General Meeting
Outgoing chairman Sam McCormick thanked everyone for their attendance, and welcomed the evening’s guest speaker Ben Yates from the Wyndford Herd based in Shropshire; and sponsor Gary Watson of Dairy Herd Management.
In the chairman’s report Sam McCormick said it had been a very full and successful year for Holstein NI. He outlined some of the highlights of his term in office, including the club’s annual stockjudging event hosted by the Patton family’s highly acclaimed Ards Herd; the Ulster Bank-sponsored herds inspection competition which continues to grow from strength-to-strength, with the McMurray family’s Matfield herd emerging as the overall winner; the multi-breed calf show which was well organised and supported; and the February bull sale which saw Brian Mawhinney’s Laurelhill Sultan command a top price of 8,200gns.
“Congratulations to Neal Pepper on winning the Holstein and interbreed championship awards at Balmoral Show with his second calver Sahara Goldwyn Ambrosia. She went on to win the 30th Anniversary Bailey’s Irish Cow championship at Virginia Show.
“The Haffey family from Lurgan – Stephen, Timothy, Aaron and David from Lurgan, won the McLarnon Dairy Cow of the Year title with the home-bred Kilvergan Duplex Ethel 2. She also won several breed championships during the show season.
“The RUAS Winter Fair was won by John Patterson, and sons James and Andrew, Crumlin, with the home-bred Ballyginniff Goldwyn Cindy. Last but not least, the Irish National Holstein Show attracted an increased entry with some very strong classes. For the first time in years we welcomed exhibitors from Eire, and congratulations to David and Kenny Boyd from Glaslough who won the supreme and reserve championship awards with home-bred animals.”
Sam McCormick also praised the Holstein Young Breeders’ Club, which under the leadership of co-ordinator Jonny Lyons, had secured numerous awards during the year. “The HYB is a great credit to Holstein NI, with its members taking many top awards throughout Ireland and the UK. Both the A and B teams from Northern Ireland have won the UK Field to Foto competition for three years in succession!”
Concluding Sam McCormick thanked the judges, stewards, sponsors and committee members for their support during his term in office. “I would like to wish Holstein NI success for the forthcoming year, and I hope milk prices remain stable!”
Holstein NI secretary and treasurer outlined the club’s accounts for the last twelve months, and urged breeders to support the club’s sales.
Awards for the supreme champions at Provincial agricultural shows in 2013 were presented to the following members: Balmoral, Neal Pepper; Ballymena, Gaston and John Wallace; Ballymoney, Newry, Enniskillen and Londonderry/Limavady, Iain and Joyce McLean; Lurgan, Philip and Simon Haffey; Saintfield, Clandeboye Estate; Omagh, Armagh and Antrim, TS Haffey and Sons; Castlewellan, Fleming Family and John Henning; Clogher, George and Jason Booth.
Holstein NI presents a special award annually, in recognition of outstanding service and commitment to the club. This year’s award was presented to joint winners Sam McCormick, and outgoing HYB co-ordinator Jonny Lyons.
The election of office bearers was conducted by Gary Watson of Dairy Herd Management .He congratulated the club on another successful year and commended the work of the office bearers, in particular, the leadership of Sam McCormick.
Gary Watson highlighted some of the recent developments within Dairy Herd Management. “The number of herds milk recording continues to rise, but there are still too many herds not using the service,” he stressed. Herd health testing was also identified as a particular growth area within the business, in particular whole herd Johne’s testing.
“Producers continue to embrace new technology, with over half of all herds now accessing their results online every month,” said Gary, who also outlined the options for easier recording of data and how this information could be used to further improve the business.
As an example he talked about fertility information and how it is collated. “The information can be processed by the milk recorder, directly onto ‘Your Herd’ the online programme, or via the ‘Mobile Herd’ App which is free to download on iphones and ipads.”
During his presentation Gary Watson gave an example of a real herd with service and PD data recorded and used it to highlight areas of strength and weakness in the field of fertility, looking at parameters such as calving interval, days to first service and days between service. Gary also highlighted the Heatime system which he described as another tool to aid in fertility management by detecting heats twenty four hours a day.
The following office bearers were elected for 2014/15: chairman, Gaston Wallace, Printshop Herd, Nutt’s Corner; vice-chairman, Stuart Smith, Prehen Herd, Londonderry; secretary/treasurer, John Martin, Kesh; and HYB co-ordinator, Andrew Kennedy, Ballymena.
Newly elected committee members who will serve a three-year term include: Tommy Henry, Mostragee Herd, Strancoum; Nicholas McCann, Simlahill Herd, Bangor; David Perry, Killane Herd, Ahoghill; John Berry, Skybrook Herd, Armagh; and William Bolton, Carrick Farm Herd, Maghera.
Guest speaker Ben Yates thanked Holstein NI for inviting him to address the AGM. He attributed his enthusiasm for the Holstein breed to the late Ian Montgomery from County Down. “I worked at Smiddiehill and that’s where I developed my passion for pedigrees and showing cows.”
Having travelled extensively working with Holsteins in countries such as Japan, the USA and Australia, Ben Yates manages the noted Wyndford Herd owned by Wilfred Maddocks Ltd. The herd consists of 220 youngstock, and 235 cows producing an average of 10,150kgs at 3.7% butterfat and 3.2% protein. The dairy herd based at Chadwell Grange in Newport is run alongside a 2,000 acre arable enterprise growing wheat, barley, oilseed rape, maize and potatoes.
In 2010 a new dairy unit was erected on a green field site, providing a 24:24 Westfalia milking parlour, loose straw-bedded housing for 220 cows, and a conference facility.
Showing cattle is a big part of the business at Wyndford Holsteins, with the breeding policy firmly fixed on milk, fertility and type. Ben’s presentation highlighted some of the herd’s show successes both at home and in Europe. Among the photographs of the herd’s top cows was the NI-bred Ashleigh Amanda EX94, who has produced over 70 tonnes of milk and has daughters in England and Ireland.
Newly elected vice chairman Stuart Smith proposed a vote of thanks to Ben Yates for his interesting and informative presentation. He also thanked Dairy Herd Managed for its continued support of the AGM.
- Members of Holstein NI will have an opportunity to visit the Wyndford Holstein Herd later this year. It is featured alongside the Helton (Helers Cheese) and Woodmarsh herds on the itinerary for the club’s two-day trip, which also includes a visit to the inaugural UK Dairy Day at Telford. Anyone interested on going on the trip which takes place on 16th and 17th September, should contact John Martin on mobile: 07711 041128.
Pictured at Holstein NI's 15th annual general meeting, Moira, are from left: newly elected chairman Gaston Wallace, Nutt's Corner; guest speaker Ben Yates, Wyndford Holsteins, Shropshire; and sponsor Gary Watson, Dairy Herd Management.
Holstein NI secretary John Martin, and chairman Gaston Wallace, with Gary Watson of Dairy Herd Management who sponsored the club's 15th AGM, held at Moira.
Gary Watson, Dairy Herd Management, sponsored Holstein NI's 15th AGM, held at Moira. He is pictured with the club's newly vice chairman Stuart Smith, and chairman Gaston Wallace.
Members who won Holstein championships during the 2013 show season received awards at the AGM. Back row, from left: John Henning, Moira; Gaston Wallace, Nutt's Corner; Aaron and Timothy Haffey, Lurgan. Seated, from left: Mark Logan, Clandeboye; Matthew and John McLean, Bushmills.
Recipients of Holstein NI's Club Award for outstanding service during 2013 were outgoing chairman Sam McCormick, Bangor; and outgoing HYB co-ordinator Jonny Lyons.
Office bearers pictured at Holstein NI's 15th AGM, Moira, from left; Gaston Wallace, chairman; Andrew Kennedy, HYB co-ordinator; Stuart Smith, vice-chairman; and John Martin, secretary/treasurer
Pictured at Holstein NI's 15th annual general meeting are John Berry, Armagh; Timothy Haffey, Lurgan; and Kyle Henry, Newry.
Guest speaker Ben Yates, centre, chats to Holstein NI vice-chairman Stuart Smith, Londonderry, and Mark Logan, Clandeboye Estate, at the club's 15th AGM, held at Moira.