Fram farmers member roger watts (left) with jeff claydon ceo of claydon drills and jemma neesham machinery buyer fram farmers lr

From l-r: Roger Watts (Fram Farmers member), Jeff Claydon (CEO Claydon), Jemma Neesham (Machinery Buyer Fram Farmers)

Claydon Open Days

Fram Farmers member Roger Watts (pictured left) of F.S. Watts & Sons, Framlingham Hall Farms in Suffolk was one of over 150 farmers, including Fram Farmers members, who attended a series of four open days hosted by Claydon Drills at their factory in Wickhambrook, Suffolk on 12th and 13th May. Roger is pictured with Jeff Claydon, who farms 1000 acres at Gaines Hall, Wickhambrook and is CEO of Claydon Drills, together with Fram Farmers' Machinery Buyer Jemma Neesham.

Reducing crop establishment costs is on every grower's mind at the moment. Highlighting the significant benefits of the Claydon Strip Seeding System in reducing crop establishment costs, which he has used exclusively for 14 years, Jeff pointed out that many growers who plough or deep cultivate are losing £30-£40/t at current cereal prices. Seed, ag-chems and fertilisers provide no scope for cost-cutting as they are yield-critical and therefore essentially 'fixed', so cutting the cost of establishment provides the only real area for significant reductions. Instead of a plough-based approach, which on his heavy land would cost around £300/ha and take three to four hours per hectare, the Claydon System costs just £51/ha and takes 26 minutes, plus an average additional yield benefit of 1t/ha over a plough-based system, giving an overall benefit of over £300/ha, which has transformed the economics and timeliness of producing combinable crops.

But, Jeff warned, many growers are currently turning to 'no-till' and 'low-disturbance' establishment without appreciating the drawbacks and also the need for effective stubble management to contain weed and pest issues. 

Thanks to over 150 visitors who attended the Open Sessions, particularly those visitors from overseas, those who had made long journeys from all over the UK and also members from Farm Farmers.