Real time data to monitor performance remotely
Winnidad Farms set up a new finishing unit in Cambridgeshire in October 2021. The business is owned by James Law and his sister Sarah. Winnidad runs 1,500 calves on the unit, which is managed by Martin Van Vuuren as farm manager with the support of two additional staff members. The cattle are kept outside all year round which works well as the farm is situated in one of the driest parts of England.
Having moved from Australia, where Winnidad also operates a sheep and cattle farm, James knew the differences in legislation and assurance in the UK were going to be a new challenge. He needed a tool to help with compliance.
In February 2022 James took on the role of Chief Operating Officer of Breedr. As a result, he was not able to physically be on-farm as often as he would like as such he relies heavily on Martin and his team for the day to day management of the unit. He needed a tool to give him real time visibility on the performance of the cattle from wherever he was working.
Individual animal management
The finishing unit monitors margins carefully to ensure profitability so, when James considered Breedr, it was ideal as it’s an individual animal management solution and really suited his needs. James said “I needed a tool that my team can easily understand and that is reliable, Breedr is the perfect solution.”
Winnidad invested in a set of scales and made sure the race was properly set up, ‘ Weighing is really efficient, we can run 200 cattle over the scales in less than 2 hours.’ Weighing allows him to get regular insight into the cattle performance and ensure they are reaching their full potential.
“weighing regularly allows Breedr to forecast future animal growth, I can then inform my customer when to expect their animals.”
“Our aim is to finish the cattle at 18 months and our target DLWG is 1.5kg, with Breedr we can easily see which animals are not achieving this and take remedial action”.
The team uses the medicine cabinet function to help with compliance. When they get new medication they can scan the barcode and upload the new medication to the cabinet. Then when medicine is administered it removes each dose from the medicine available. The team can review the medicine administered to each animal and monitor antibiotic use allowing them to target pinch points where medication could be reduced through management changes.
“I can be completely sure that my records are up to date and I can take action to become more efficient quickly”.
One of the key uses for the app on the farm is to forecast supply. Knowing exactly when the animals are ready for exit from the unit ensures that the customer has a regular and predictable supply of animals.