Free expert advice on improving youngstock performance is the focus of a roadshow that is coming to Bridgwater, Shaftesbury and Bodmin in March.

The series of #FitForTheFuture youngstock meetings is part of a nationwide roadshow being delivered this March by ForFarmers, with the aim of providing expert guidance to dairy farmers looking to improve future dairy herd performance through better calf and heifer rearing.

With heifer rearing accounting for the second largest expenditure on dairy farms after feed costs, improving calf and heifer rearing can have a significant, positive impact on improving a dairy enterprise’s profitability.

Each meeting will revolve around presentations from three leading experts in the field of youngstock management, including Peter Van’t Veld, technical manager at Denkavit, youngstock rearing specialist Dr Steven Morrison from Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute and Jamie Robertson, director of Livestock Management Systems Ltd and honorary research fellow at Aberdeen University.

Topics that will be covered as part of the #FitForTheFuture meeting include the use of colostrum and milk feeding to maximise calf performance, steps that producers can take to ensure that heifers achieve their first calving targets and how improved housing can boost calf health and growth gains.

The events are free to attend but places must be reserved via the ForFarmers website.

- Friday March 9 - 10.30am Lanhydrock Hotel, Lostwithiel Road, Bodmin, PL30 5AQ

- Thursday March 8 - 10.30am Junction 24, Sedgemoor Auction Centre, Market Way, Bridgwater, TA6 6DF

- Thursday March 8 - 7.00pm Best Western Royal Chase Hotel, Shaftesbury, Dorset, SP7 8DB