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Agrii West Autumn 2015 Contents Benchmarking Berkshire Progress Page 1 Update from around the region Page 2 Valuing Wheat Micro-nutrition Page 3 A Year of Change Page 3 Agrii at British Potato 2015 Page 3 Growing Precision Drives Quality Wheat Process Page 4 World Wheat Record Claim Page 4 AgriiFocus Research Update Page 5 New AgriiFocus Results Conference Page 5 Agrii iFarm Locations in the West Page 6 Agrii at LAMMA 2016 Page 6 Enquiry Contact Numbers Page 6 www.agrii.co.uk agriiUK 01 Benchmarking Berkshire Progress Y attendon Estates arable business between Reading and Newbury has been transformed over the past 15 years in a determined drive for improvement informed by the most relevant agronomic intelligence and benchmarking with like-minded growers across southern England. The 2100 ha of mainly Grade 3 ground presents more than its fair share of management challenges. However farms director Alastair Jeffrey and his team of four have been averaging around 10 tha from their milling wheat up to 5tha from oilseed rape and comfortably over 8.5 tha from winter barley in recent years. This is a far cry from the late 1990s when under previous management the Estates feed wheats were struggling to reach 8tha and oilseed rape had been abandoned as unviable. Working with Agrii Alastair attributes a large part of this turnaround to fundamental changes in cultivation and establishment practice alongside early adoption of the best varieties and techniques and continual performance comparisons with other businesses. To identify the best available wheat OSR and barley varieties he relies on intelligence from the extensive research programme at the AgriiFocus Technology Centre near Marlborough and commercial feedback from the Maximising Arable Performance MAP group of 70 southern county growers of which he is a part. Weve switched from all feed to mainly milling wheat over the years to make the most from our yield-limited ground Alastair explained. We started with Hereward then moved to Gallant and Solstice as the AgriiFocus results gave us confidence in the emerging varieties. Following the sites latest research were now growing mainly Crusoe with some Skyfall. Our confidence was reinforced by MAP results showing Crusoe was by far the top margin earner of all wheat varieties across our group in 2014. In the same way the AgriiFocus barley trials led us to replace the bulk of our Cassata with Volume which also stood out as the top 2014 earner in our MAP group. With the rape too weve been guided first by the trials and then by the MAP results to move to 50 HOLL rape last season and 100 this. As well as variety choice Alastair Jeffrey values the opportunity MAP provides to compare Yattendon performance with other growers in the area. The benchmarking system which uses information directly from Gatekeeper enables key components of crop technical and financial performance to be compared with the average of the group and top 25 performers. It also allows comparisons to be made by soil type farm size and individual but anonymous businesses with which the Estate is most similar. In addition to setting out average crop and variety performance by yield inputs and gross margin for the year across the group the confidential annual report all our members receive gives them the opportunity to compare their individual crop and whole enterprise performance with their peers explained Agrii west business development manager Rob Baker who has worked with Alastair since 2005. Despite the limitations of its ground Yattendon has climbed steadily up our MAP league table in recent years to sit within the top quarter in margin performance. As well as providing Alastair and his agronomist Craig Livingstone with valuable confirmation of their progress comparisons with similar members enterprises enable them to examine performance in detail to identify strengths to build on and the most valuable areas to address in their forward planning. Its all about not standing still concluded Alastair Jeffrey. The seasons will always give us ups and downs. But I want and my board needs to see were improving our place in the league table while delivering growing contributions to the Estate.Craig Livingstone Alastair Jeffrey and Rob Baker examining the MAP results.