Hillhead of Covington

Name:
William Baillie
Location:
Lanarkshire
Farm sectors:
Dairy

About Hillhead of Covington

  • Strategic Dairy Farm since August 2018
  • All year round calving herd of 310 Holstein cows
  • 11,591 litres per cow @ 3.82% fat, 3.11% protein
  • Milking 3 x Daily
  • Total 159 hectares
  • Fully housed

Follow our journey if you are interested in:

  • Managing a high yielding, all year round calving, pedigree Holstein herd
  • Feeding and managing the high yielding dairy cow
  • Increasing milk production - achieving 12,000 litres per cow per year
  • Reducing the overall cost of production  improving business performance by focusing on two important areas; nutrition and genetics
  • Improving herd health – Mastitis target < 15%, RFM < 3% and DA < 2%
  • All year round housing of cows – Cow accommodation with emphasis on the cow
  • Managing an efficient, progressive business – setting targets and using benchmarking to measure progress, ensuring they are amongst the best-performing dairy farms

Overview

William Baillie bought Hillhead of Covington in 1996 initially starting with 50 cows. He now has 310 pedigree Holsteins and is aiming to grow the herd to 400 cows. There are eight staff on the farm supporting Willie, four full time and four part-time.

Our farm

Hillhead is based in the county of Lanarkshire in the central Lowlands of Scotland. It is 6 miles from Biggar and just 12 miles from the main M74 motorway. The farm consists of 159 hectares – of which is 118 hectares is grassland and 33 ha arable land.

Our herd

The herd is currently made up of 310 pedigree Holstein cows, calved all year round and achieving 11,591 litres of milk per cow per year at 3.82% butterfat and 3.11% protein. The herd is milked three times per day and are housed all year round. They rear all their own replacements with an age at first calving of 24.5 months. Cows are fed a diet of mainly grass silage, whole crop and draff.

Our journey

Their journey over the years has seen the expansion of the herd from the initial 50 cows to over 300 today with all being home reared. This has seen investment in modern cow housing with sand cubicles and expanding the young calf housing. 

William is a big believer in benchmarking, having been doing so for over five years prior to becoming a Strategic Dairy Farm, and has always found it incredibly useful. William says “Now, as a strategic dairy farmer we’ll be benchmarking our performance against AHDB’s key performance indicators for all year round herds. Using that data we will be able to set targets and measure our progress to ensure we are among the best-performing dairy farms”.

The ultimate aim at Hillhead is to reduce the overall cost of production and increase efficiency, whilst further improving the herd health. William wishes to improve business performance by focusing on two important areas; nutrition and genetics

Our key performance figures

Hillhead of Covington openly share their KPIs so you can see how they perform against a number or technical and financial measures.

• Review our key performance indicators here

Previous meetings

William Baillie

“I’ve been benchmarking for over five years and I’ve always found it incredibly useful. Now, as a strategic dairy farmer we’ll be benchmarking our performance against AHDB’s key performance indicators for all year round herds."

William Baillie

“I’ve been benchmarking for over five years and I’ve always found it incredibly useful. Now, as a strategic dairy farmer we’ll be benchmarking our performance against AHDB’s key performance indicators for all year round herds."

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