A workshop to explore the benefits and opportunities from improved pasture management to inform the development of a new digital tool
This virtual workshop brought farmers together to feed into the development of a new data platform to improve pasture performance – PASTORAL. The goal this workshop was to:
- Identify gaps in data and technology to support decision making for pasture management on farm.
- Learn about and discuss technology available to measure pasture performance
- Consider and identify the data needs for farm businesses to optimise pasture management practices
- Map ways in which satellite data could help support improved farming practice – biomass and carbon modelling
Quality, productive pasture is essential for efficient livestock production. Currently farmers walk their fields with a rising plate meter to assess grass biomass available for livestock grazing. This approach does not accurately reflect field quality, nor likely future growth under climate change, limiting accuracy of pasture management decisions. The PASTORAL service will be co-designed with livestock farmers split equally between beef, dairy and lamb producers across England, with service testing, development and demonstration across organic, regenerative agriculture and conventional farming systems. Click here to learn more!
PASTORAL is a partnership project funded by Innovate UK to develop a digital tool to support farmers to increase farm productivity and carbon efficiency through improved pasture performance and management. It aims to develop a digital solution that can deliver weekly data and insights on current and projected grass biomass and to quantify carbon budgets. The tool will use satellite data to map and forecast at field scale in order to support on-farm decision making on stocking rates, forage budgeting, cutting dates and future planning. PASTORAL will provide weekly information through a co-designed platform to increase farm productivity and carbon efficiency. It is led by Environment Systems Ltd in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh and the Soil Association.