Oh the great British summer, just a while ago the talk was of the hottest day ever and here we are today with 50 to 60mph winds, luckily for us there is not much rain with the wind otherwise there could have been some damage but for now the combines all around are parked up while we wait for some calmer weather.
Working with the weather can be a frustrating process at times, however it seems we should not complain because we are told every time you turn on the radio or look at social media that it’s all our fault anyway. Agriculture we are told is the main reason behind climate change and hardly a day goes by when there is not something in the press or social media that puts the blame on our industry, stating that everyone should be moving to a plant-based diet so on and so forth.
It’s nice sometimes to come across something that at least tries to address the argument a little. I came across an article published by Fronterra which argues that the milk substitutes pushed so hard by the green/vegan lobby were being described by nutritionists as being little more than flavoured water. These so called milks like soya/rice/almond cost more and yet are nutritionally inferior. There is more protein in a litre of cow’s milk, around 32g per litre whereas among the others, soy is at the top scoring 28g with the rice and almond milks down at 7.4g/l and 8.1g/l.
In a study in Sweden they found that the greenhouse gas production from cows’ milk was significantly less than all other beverages and Fronterra claim that in New Zealand the greenhouse gas production per litre of milk is lower still. It is good to see a fight back against what seems to be a tidal wave coming toward us but it’s just a shame such information has to come from abroad. If our own representatives such as the NFU or milk buyers like Arla are doing similar I am yet to see it. Just to put the nonsense being spoken about regarding cows into perspective…
None of our cows have been on a plane or have driven a car. They don’t need electricity to charge their phones, cook or to watch a TV, indeed they seldom need electricity except to power lighting in an emergency (a very infrequent occurrence!). They eat grass, the grass is home to the worms and other microscopic species, the grass has clover and other flowers which bees, hover flies, moths, butterflies etc like. They do poo, just like humans’ poo but don’t wipe their backsides with paper or wet wipes so they have no need for huge factories making toilet rolls for them! Their poo attracts flies and beetles. Birds eat flies and beetles. Birds nest on the ground and in trees near the source of food, insects, so where there are cows there are birds. Cows live on massive carbon sinks; it is called grassland. Humans can’t eat grass!
So, we have a new prime minister! I am really not sure if I should be even going here or not… but, the whole Brexit situation really seems to have been the most divisive subject in our society almost in my lifetime, whether you were for or against I guess we will all find out after October, France/Begium would appear to be organising a beach party to wave farewell to Britain as it departs from the EU. 11,000 people have said they will be attending the party to be held in Holland in the town of Wijk Aan Zee. Apparently, the party will involve sitting on deck chairs drinking French wine and a band will be playing “Should I stay, or should I go” as well as Dame Vera Lynn’s “We’ll meet again.” I guess living so close to Dover we may be a little more sensitive to the potential of long tail backs at the ports but after the high winds of the weekend we had three to four mile tail backs as the ferries struggled to dock in the winds – something we may have to get used to.
On a lighter (or darker) note the evenings are now drawing in, the damp nights have started in earnest. As I am sure most will understand the dreaded “W” word (winter) is just around the corner, A level results day is now in the past and thankfully Fergus achieved the most fantastic results and is now on his way to RAU Cirencester to study for his degree in Agriculture with business management. The children are all packed and ready to go back to school. We have had an amazing summer holidays and I shall miss them all when they go back to school.
Unfortunately, we had the unpleasant experience of unwanted intruders breaking into the farm buildings, they obviously took great pleasure in taking all items that were quickly resalable including all the children’s bikes, chainsaws, hedge cutter etc. CCTV will now be installed so watch out we will seek you out!