27th September 2019

Farmers invited to Sward Sticks to Software Better Grazing meetings

Livestock farmers will get the chance to learn about the tools available to them for measuring and planning grazing management to optimize output per hectare at the next round of Better Grazing meetings, hosted by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS).

Throughout a series of five meetings Dr Liz Genever, who has a wealth of experience working with beef and sheep farmers and was part of the team that put together the GrasscheckGB project, will outline ways to measure grass growth and software available to meet the needs of livestock profitably.

Farmers from across Scotland are invited to attend the Sward Sticks to Software meetings, which are free to attend and take place across the country from 23 to 31 October.

Sarah Millar, QMS Head of Industry Development said: “These meetings are a fantastic way for farmers to find out about several methods that are available to measure their grass, and what software is available for doing so to help them farm profitably. Well managed grazed grass is the cheapest feed for cattle and sheep and efficient grazing management is essential to maximise grass growth and utilisation.

“Not only will attendees get the chance to find out about how to make the most of the measurements they do take, they will be given the tools to develop their own grazing plan with help from Dr Genever and fellow farmers.

“These workshops are expected to be popular and provide the opportunity to learn from experienced grazers about how they have used data on grass measurements to make decisions on their farm.”

Dr Genever commented: “Grass and forage-based systems offer beef and sheep farmers the ability to be resilient in uncertain times, but careful management is needed. Through these workshops I’ll be talking about this as well as arming farmers with the tools to help them manage their systems more efficiently.

“I will also be discussing how to make the most of grass and forage and the importance of using any data that is already being collected. Farmers will be left informed about various tools and techniques for measuring and monitoring grass that are available, so they can select the one that is going to work for them and their business.”

The meetings will take place on the following dates, with an afternoon visit included in each to a farm nearby:

Wednesday 23 October – Forteviot Village Hall, Forteviot, Perth, PH2 9BT

Thursday 24 October – Station Hotel, Station Brae, Ellon AB41 9BD

Friday 25 October – Balnain Hall, Inverness IV63 6TJ

Wednesday 30 October – Annandale Arms Hotel, High St, Moffat DG10 9HF

Thursday 31 October - Selkirk Rugby Club, Selkirk TD7 5AZ

Attendance at the workshops is free and lunch will be provided.  Please ensure you have clean, disinfectable footwear for the farm visit.

Places can be reserved on the Eventbrite booking website - search for QMS Better Grazing - or by contacting Laura Strang at QMS on 0131 510 8476 or lstrang@qmscotland.co.uk


For further press information please contact Ruth McClean, QMS Corporate Communications Manager, on 0131 510 7920 or email: rmcclean@qmscotland.co.uk

Notes to editors:

  • QMS is the public body responsible for promoting the PGI labelled Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb brands in the UK and abroad and also promoting Scottish pork products under the Specially Selected Pork logo.
  • Please note that the use of the word Scotch in the Scotch Beef PGI and Scotch Lamb PGI brands is correct and should not be substituted for an alternative such as Scots or Scottish. The history of the use of the word Scotch in this way, traces back to the 18th century.
  • QMS also helps the Scottish red meat sector improve its sustainability, efficiency and profitability and maximise its contribution to Scotland's economy.
  • The quality assurance schemes run by QMS cover more than 90% of livestock farmed for red meat in Scotland. They offer consumers in the UK and overseas the legal guarantee that the meat they buy has come from animals that have spent their whole lives being raised to some of the world’s strictest welfare standards.
  • Scotland’s beef, lamb and pork producers make an important contribution to the country’s economic, social and environmental sustainability, contributing over £2 billion to the annual GDP of Scotland and supporting around 50,000 jobs (many in fragile rural areas) in the farming, agricultural supply and processing sectors.
  • For more information visit www.qmscotland.co.uk or follow QMS on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.





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