In what was his first annual report to members as BLCS Chairman, Peter Kirton, Severn Lodge Farm, Kinlet, Bewdley, Worcestershire, outlined another record year of achievement in 2011 that had surpassed the new marks set only in the previous twelve months. The annual report highlighted:
- Pedigree registrations in the year breaking through the 20,000 barrier for the first time to a new record mark.
- Society sales in the year grossing £7.3 Million, up by £1 Million on the year and another UK all-breeds record figure.
- Limousin again being confirmed as the UK’s number one beef breed for the 16th year in succession.
- Over £90,000 being returned to members in the year through breed improvement and health incentives.
- The launch of the £1.8 Million Carcase Traits project along with ABP and SAC Egenes, and including a £300,000 investment by the BLCS.
Moving into the present year Mr. Kirton said that the breeds’ sale performance had continued strongly with Carlisle in February seeing an all-breeds record average of £8,243 for 131 bulls which was up by over £2000 on the previous mark.
In congratulating breeders for their work and efforts, in what had been the Society’s 40th anniversary year, he noted that the ongoing high-level of performance in core activities had also resulted in a solid financial performance. This in turn, he said, allowed the Society to continue its investment in the technical and promotional initiatives to further progress the Limousin breed.
Speaking at the AGM, Mr Kirton urged breeders to drive on with breed improvement in their herds and to focus on producing cattle that met the demands of the market place. Highlighting the recently launched Carcase Traits project he said: “This project is leading edge and far sighted. It will deliver accelerated genetic improvement in economically important traits and will be a first step into the coming world of genomics. It’s principal focus however is to deliver increased returns and profitability to pedigree and commercial producers.
In the year ahead the Society will continue to look at a programme of breed improvement initiatives including; the provision, costs and uptake of performance recording; calving ease studies; food conversion projects; genotyping and the integration of genomics; and on-farm costings. All are part of an essential long-term technical programme to take the breed forward.”
BLCS Honorary Treasurer Mary Reynolds presented the financial report for the year and noted that the strong finances established over a number of years had built the platform from which the Society’s Council could plan for the future. In echoing the need for continuous breed improvement she commented: “beef producers have industry choices and their loyalty will be guided by consistency, performance, and profitability. This is our forward challenge as a breed and Society and the commitment is there to invest accordingly in the required technical programmes”.
The main points of the financial year reported were:
- Total income for the period ended 31st December 2011 was £1,005,569 up by £75,449 on the year.
- Total expenditure was £886,337 up by £162,170 on the year which resulted in a positive surplus of income over expenditure for the year of £119,232 before other recognised gains/losses
- Income from birth registration fees leveled at £606,571.
- Sale commission rose by 4%, up by £2,421, to a record total of £68,614.
- The total net movement in funds on the year was £89,550.
- Total funds carried forward came to £2,302,462
In further comments to the figures, Mrs Reynolds noted that income for the year had gone through the £1 Million mark and that this, along with the increase in expenditure, had largely been due to the extended activities in the Society’s 40th anniversary year.
The 41st British Limousin Cattle SocietyAGM was held at the Royal Highland Show having moved around the UK regions in the preceding four years.