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Cheshire herd takes top award for ‘best practice’ Johne’s control

Published July 6th 2016

Cheshire-based dairy producers Tom and Karen Halton, from Astbury in Congleton, are winners of the 2016 NMR HerdWise award, announced at the Livestock Event, NEC, today (July 6). Now in its second year, this award is for the herd demonstrating best practice Johne’s disease control.
Tom & Karen Halton - 2016 HerdWise Best Practice Competition WinnersKaren & Tom Halton
Runners-up in 2015, the Haltons have made some changes in their Johne’s control to move up to top place with their 500-cow cross-bred herd. “Strong, clear protocols backed up with an enthusiastic and inclusive team approach to Johne’s control – and to the whole herd management – has put this herd in top place,” says Gwent-based dairy producer and chairman of the National Johne’s Action Group Lyndon Edwards.
 
Martin and Carol Beaumont, from Twycross in Warwickshire, are this year’s runners-up with their 260-cow block calving herd. “The Beaumont’s work closely with their vet and regularly assess the risks of Johne’s entering and spreading in their herd. Their commitment to acting on this and refining control plans is impressive,” adds Mr Edwards.
 
The judges, Lyndon Edwards and NMR vet Karen Bond, selected two further finalists Andrew and Vicky Harrison for ACF Drax, from Millers Dairy at Wareham in Dorset,
and Jonathan and Suzie Jackson, from Longpools Farm at Market Drayton in Shropshire.
 
All finalists received a certificate to mark their achievement. The winners – the Haltons – received the HerdWise Silver Salver and a HerdWise voucher for £500. The Beaumonts, as runners-up, received a £250 HerdWise voucher. 
2016 HerdWise Best Practice Competition Finalists
HERDWISE AWARD 2016 finalists l to r Vicky and Andrew Harrison, Tom and Karen Halton, Jonathan Jackson and Chris Garrad, herdsman for Martin and Carol Beaumont
“We’ve developed the HerdWise award to highlight herds that have adopted comprehensive management protocols, specific to their requirements, to control Johne’s disease,” says judge and NMR vet Karen Bond.
 
“We had more than 50 entries from herds that are tackling Johne’s very proactively and that, through entering the award, are prepared to demonstrate their efforts. This helps to raise the awareness of the disease and show that, with producer commitment and good veterinary support, it can be managed successfully on farm.”
 
This annual award is open to all NMR customers who use the CHeCS-accredited quarterly milk screening service HerdWise. Routinely collected individual cow milk samples used for recording are also used in the HerdWise service to identify any infected cows. The results are an essential first stage for producers and their vets in their Johne's disease management programme.