HIGHLAND SHEEP 2019 GETTING READY FOR LAMBING AS EVENT SPONSOR ANNOUNCED

1st February 2019

Animal feed and health product specialists, Harbro Ltd, along with their key distributor for the Caithness area, W and Geddes, have been confirmed as major sponsor of NSA Highland Sheep Sheep 2019.

The biennial on-farm sheep event, organised by NSA Scotland, is being hosted by the Sutherland family on their farm of Sibmister, Thurso, on Wednesday, June 12, and is expected to attract a large attendance of sheep farmers from all over Scotland and beyond.

“We are delighted to once again be supporting NSA Highland Sheep along with W and A Geddes,” said Harbro beef and sheep director, David MacKenzie. “The event plays an important part in highlighting the sheep industry in the north of Scotland and is a great opportunity for visitors to see a progressive family farm.”

Harbro has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the Sutherland family, who are supplied through Geddes.

“Collectively, we have worked closely with the team on-farm to focus on the efficiency of both their sheep and beef enterprises with the aim of maximising the performance of their livestock,” said Mr MacKenzie.

Other sponsors confirmed so far include ANM Group, Caltech Crystalyx, MSD Animal Health, Shearwell Data and British Wool and the event will be supported by Quality Meat Scotland. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

Sibmister Farm, and the nearby farm of Stainland, is run by Kenneth and Elspeth Sutherland with their two sons, Stephen and his fiancée, Alix Brown, and Kenneth and his wife, Fiona.

The farming enterprise extends to 1700 acres, all in grass, and stocking comprises 1500 Texel X Cheviot ewes, which are crossed with Suffolk and Texel rams, and pedigree flocks of 50 Suffolk and 50 Texel ewes. There is also a spring-calving suckler herd of 400 Simmental X Longhorn cows which are crossed with Charolais and Simmental bulls.

It will be a busy times for the family in the run-up to NSA Highland Sheep with lambing starting at the end of February with the pure-bred ewes and 200 cross ewes, followed by the main flock in March and hoggs and a further 250 cross ewes in April.

“We are looking forward to lambing as the ewes have scanned very well this year, with fewer empty ewes, more twins and fewer triplets,” says Stephen. “Wintering costs are also down as the open winter has meant a month’s less supplementary feeding. We’ve never been short of grass and in fact the farm is still looking abnormally green for this time of year.”

This will be the fourth biennial Highland Sheep event since the series started in 2013 when Dingwall Auction Mart was the venue, followed by Fearn Farm, Tain (John Scott) in 2015 and Kinnaird Farm, Contin (JP Clark Ltd) in 2017.

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February 1, 2019