With the autumn calving block just around the corner we wanted to highlight a couple of Torch services that may be of interest to help you get prepared! As everything happens within a defined time period for the seasonal calver, moni – toring and preventing problems as soon as possible is key and the aim of the services detailed below are to proactively prevent issues arising or to rectify them as soon as possible. Firstly we have two types of youngstock monitoring plans. The idea behind these plans is to ensure that our colostrum man – agement is providing calves with adequate protection to prevent disease and allow for any tweaks as soon as possible. We also monitor growth rates to check we are hitting targets and optimise any areas where growth appears challenged: Our youngstock club gives you 12 one hour visits with a tech to take 20 total proteins to monitor for success of passive transfer and growth rates (these 12 visits can be taken weekly for twelve weeks or fortnightly as fits your system), reports are generated and benchmarking for just £360 total (can be paid as £30/month for the year) Youngstock lite was designed as a less in – tensive monitoring tool and involves 3 one hour visits with a tech and 12 total proteins Youngstock lite was designed as a less in – tensive monitoring tool and involves 3 one hour visits with a tech and 12 total pro – teins and costs £125. Secondly in an effort to optimise conception rates we have a number of clients submitting AI straws via Torch to an external lab (RAFT) to ensure that the bulls that have been selected for breed – ing have good viability and motility.Semen rate ‘stress’ tests the semen helping identi – fy problem (higher risk) batches of semen.Historically we have seen blocks by bulls that have been subfertile which haven’t been identified until there have been a number of returns or pd negatives. Testing these samples pre-service means that we know this part of the service is not going to be a problem. Please let your vet know if any of these services are of interest to you.

Whether you are rearing youngstock as dairy replacements, suckler replacements, stock for market or slaughter; maximising outputs and minimising losses is vital to any successful enterprise. Key factors to consider when determining maximum health and development of youngstock include: • Are your calves getting adequate colostrum? • Do you know what daily liveweight gain your calves are achieving? • Do you know what they should be achieving? • Does the milk powder you’re using suit your system? • What is your disease incidence? • What is your mortality rate? • Are you aware of the most up to date research into the areas that can have the biggest positive effect on calf rearing? The Torch Farm Youngstock Club works in partnership with clients, providing ongoing support and monitoring throughout the year to help to ensure you are getting the most from your youngstock. What’s involved with the Youngstock Club and what support will I receive? • 12 x 1 hour visits per year/calving season • Measuring of total proteins • Collecting data • A dedicated Vet Tech allocated to your farm • Creating written reports for you and your farms’ vet to monitor performance and discuss areas that could be improved How do I join? If you would like more information on how we can help you get the most from your youngstock then please get in touch. with your vet or your local Torch Farm branch who will give you further information and talk you through the steps needed to join.

Thank you to everyone who visited us at our Summer Shows! The sometimes challenging weather did nothing to dampen spirits both inside and outside the tent and our team enjoyed catching up with clients new and old! If you took part in any of our competitions then keep an eye on our social media to see whether you have won

Luke graduated from the Royal Veterinary College with degrees in Veterinary Medicine & Biological Sciences. He moved from West Kent to undertake the internship to devel – op his production animal medicine in – terests. Luke presented at the British Mastitis Conference on the subject of dry period cure rates. Outside of work Luke enjoys paddle boarding, running and visiting pubs.

Many of the farms we work with are now reaping the benefits of the VaDia milking time testing service we offer. VaDia is a small battery operated, and lightweight instrument which attaches to the teat cup during milking and logs the vacuum at four points in the milking clus – ter. The units allow us to monitor vacuum readings in three mouthpieces of a single cluster during a normal milking. It can provide valuable information about: • Cow preparation (bi-modal milking) • Vacuum level and fluctuations • Teat-end vacuum during peak flow • Liner fit • Over or under milking All of the these will have a significant i mpact on mastitis, cell count and cow comfort. The information we gather thanks to VaDia will inform the implementation of (often small) changes within the parlour, resulting in an increase in milking efficiency whilst lowering the incidence of mastitis within the herd. Speak to your vet for further information