A FACILITY at an agricultural college in Cornwall is setting the standard with its 'innovative' approach to animal welfare. 

Duchy College Stoke Climsland, part of The Cornwall College Group (TCCG), has a Future Farm agricultural hub. 

The hub is dedicated to 'enhancing efficiency, welfare and technological advancement in dairy farming'. It aims to prioritise the comfort of the 200-strong dairy herd. 

There are cow cubicles to reduce the risk of injury and allow for increased freedom of movement. There is an automatic feeding system, state-of-the-art milking technology and stringent hygiene protocols, which helps to reduce mastitis and improve herd wellbeing. 

Ed Parish, TCCG's director of land-based operations, said: "We are dedicated to prioritising the well-being of livestock while fostering technological innovation and sustainability. 

“These efforts have resulted in measurable improvements, which includes increased lying behaviour and reduced somatic cell counts.

“It’s all part of Future Farm's commitment to leading the way in championing animal welfare standards within the dairy industry.”

Future Farm has exceeded set targets, and received notable commendations from veterinary professionals. 

It is surpassed both UK national figures and benchmarks established by Compassion in World Farming. Most notable were the exceptional mobility and body condition scores, along with the minimal need for veterinary interventions.

Anthony James Baggaley, farm manager at Future Farm, added: "Our blend of cutting-edge technology with compassionate stewardship creates a sanctuary where cows thrive.

“I’m excited that the holistic approach we take will extend beyond its immediate impact, serving as inspiration for the next generation of agricultural leaders, to empower students to champion ethical practices and drive positive change within the industry.”