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08.06.05
Grassland Challenge

The Grassland Challenge Project have issued a cordial invitation to their second annual demonstration day on Tuesday 21st June at Duchy College, Stoke Climsland. During the demonstration day attendees will look at how to grow maize to be cross compliant, the options surrounding growing alternative protein crops and how GPS guidance systems can save money and time for the livestock farmer.

One of the protein crops being sown on the Duchy College Farm in preparation for Demonstration DayCommenting on the maize demonstration Paul Ward, Grassland Challenge Project Manager said: "Maize is the second most important forage on many dairy and beef farms in the county because of its well established advantages of producing high yields of high quality feed, although there are several threats associated with growing the crop at the present time, including the withdrawal of the very effective pre-emergence herbicide, atrazine and it's potential to cause environmental problems. Demonstrations on the day will therefore focus on the possibilities of alternative herbicides following the withdrawal of atrazine, undersowing maize with clover mixtures for entry level stewardship and cross compliance and making optimum use of manures and slurries on maize to reduce growing costs.”

A contractor prepares to sow one of the protein crops on the Duchy College Farm for the Demonstration Day"The increasing cost of feed protein sources such as soya bean meal and rape seed meal has stimulated interest in growing protein crops on farm,” says Tim Martyn, the Grassland Challenge Extension Officer in charge of the demonstrations. "As such the main aim of the day will be to demonstrate some of the options farmers have for growing protein crops and to provide as many sources of unbiased information as possible on those crops and others, in order to enable farmers to make informed decisions.”

GPS guidance systemA GPS guidance system will be demonstrated to improve the accuracy and efficiency of spray and fertilizer applications.

Grassland Challenge is a partnership project led by Duchy College on behalf of the Cornish Grassland Societies in association with the Institute of Grassland & Environmental Research (IGER). It aims to improve the competitiveness of grassland and forage producers in Cornwall through technology transfer and dissemination of best practice. The project is part financed by the European Guidance & Agricultural Fund (EAGGF) and Defra and through sponsorship from the private sector.

The event is free and will be held at Duchy College Stoke Climsland and tours on the day will begin at 10.30 am and 1.30pm. Light refreshments will be provided.

For further information contact Hazel Burton of Grassland Challenge on 01579 372295.

The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has invested in the Grassland Challenge through the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF).

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Clare Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439

cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk

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