Dairy farm, Meka Co. Ltd. of Blowers, St James, has once again been victorious after the first quarter judging of Pine Hill Dairy’s on-going Milk Quality Awards. The farm, which is co-owned by Annette Beckett and Keith Cyrus, made history in 2017 by winning three of the four quarterly awards, as well as the overall award in the competition. The winning streak has now carried into 2018, with Meka Co. Ltd. taking the year’s first award.
Beckett reiterates that consistency is the key to the farm’s success. She also praises the team’s hard work and the dedication shown by her employees, including Adolphus Baptiste and Rawle Hinds, who were on hand to receive the award from Pine Hill Dairy’s Farm Liaison Officer, Jeremy Brereton. “We are very excited to be winning, I continue to believe that consistency is key to having a successful farm, and I’m happy to see that our team has held steady,” she said.
However, Beckett, who is the President of the Barbados Beef and Dairy Association, is wary of the possible impact the lack of rainfall, recorded during the first months of the year, will have on milk production for the remainder of 2018. “The farmers are hoping that we are not affected by the weather as we were in previous years. The lack of rainfall also impacts our forage, meaning that a lot of the grass and legumes on which our animals feed are diminished.”
Brereton, who is responsible for the programme, continues to remain optimistic about the future of the dairy industry. He says the farmers continue to excel despite the challenges. “All of our farms are performing at an extraordinary standard. Even though we must select a winner at the end of each quarter, what we have noticed is that the results are always very close, sometimes just less than one point apart. This means that the quality of milk produced by all of our farmers is of a very high standard.”
The Pine Hill Dairy Best Quarterly Milk Quality Awards began in 2015. At the end of each quarter the farmer with the highest milk quality score receives a plaque and PINEHILL product of their choice. The farmer with the best overall scores for the year, receives a special award at the Annual Farmers Awards held in the first quarter of the year. (PR)