Maple Field Milk — Good Day Coming On

February 25 2015

I feel it’s a good day coming on. Dawn is up at 6.45. Elgar’s ‘Chanson de Matin’ is playing on the van radio. 1000 litres of bottled milk, held at 3 degrees C in the back. I speed into silent Broadchalke Village. The paper man dashes ahead of me. I am ahead of the game. I feel particularly alive.

The cows of Nunton Farm are all out on the damp dark slopes of pasture leading up to the wood. I hoot as I flash past. They look up……… ‘Now what….?’ I imagine the rasp of their tongues on the frosty grass. I feel delighted that my cargo is their output and so, so fresh. This is a service no-one else can offer.

I speak to 120 people during the course of the day. In and out of gaspingly hot kitchens: up and down two flights of stairs dashing ahead of demand: talking about local food and local milk; cows at pasture; farmers in a pickle and those who are not. Into theatres, cafes, vet’s practices, hotels – feeding the people with the world’s best energy drink. An Irish farmer rings up to ask if we can build him a two-berth milking bail……….of course we can. I hear the story of a violent traffic accident outside one of the shops. This is life. This is our community.

Annoyingly I hear a sprinkling of crumbs of information coming out of the NFU’s annual conference. They say, and the Secretary of State Liz Truss says, that they oppose the EU directive on the ‘three crop rule’ and ‘greening’. So…..the men and women and their leaders, who own and who farm our precious land and who are consigned to the important job of feeding us are against the principle of good soil fertility and proper crop rotation. Why ?

Is it because it is inconvenient ? Is it because it is more difficult? What could possibly be the reasons?

Keep a watchful eye on the Cow Jones Index. Watch the colour of the cream change as the fresh spring calvers come into the herd to be milked.

Nick Snelgar

2 thoughts on “Maple Field Milk — Good Day Coming On

  1. Nick,
    I have read with eagerness and excitment all of your blogs on the campaign for real farming site, and find your fresh approach to dairying very encouraging. I think you said you would post costings for the milking bail and processing plant in one of your blogs, please forgive me if I am wrong. Now I think I have read all of the blogs and havent come across any costings yet, have I missed a blog or have they not been posted?

    Jon Meredith

    1. Hi Jon,

      That’s very good news. I have not yet produced the definitive ‘costs’ .We are adding to them daily ! And we want them to be comprehensive. We are drowning in demand. I’ll do it asap.

      Nick Snelgar

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