Top Dairy Farmer Announced

A dairy farmer from Heidelberg, Billy Hall, is the Transvaal Society of Master Dairymen’s top dairy farmer for 2003. He won this prestigious award for the second time with his Holstein herd.

The 2003 Master Dairyman was announced today at a function in Pretoria. The function was sponsored by Meadow Feeds with Meadow, National Veterinary Supplies (NVS), Central Analytical Laboratories (CAL) also sponsoring the prizes.

Billy Hall’s herd of 258 animals beat 40 other members of the society for the honour of 2003 Master Dairyman. Jas Wasserman from Bethal came a close second, with Albert Myburgh, also from Bethal, in third position.

“Some of the most successful dairy farmers in the region are members of the Transvaal society and we are extremely pleased and proud that six of the top ten herds are fed by Meadow Feeds,” comments Pieter Conradie, Marketing Director, Meadow Feeds Northern Region.

To qualify as a member of the society, a farmer’s herd has to meet certain criteria. These include a herd of more than 20 animals participating in the National Milk Recording Scheme and a maximum inter-calving period of 500 days. The entire herd is tested regularly and the index is calculated on the milk solids – butterfat and protein – produced during lactation.

Well-known animal scientist Malcolm Stewart-Burger formed the Society of Master Dairymen in Natal in 1978. Meadow Feeds, particularly ruminant specialist Dr Martin Neitz, was responsible for establishing the Free State and Transvaal societies in 1980. The societies later became defunct and were re-established with sponsorship from Meadow Feeds in 1986.

The Master Dairymen societies were formed to establish higher milk production standards in South Africa and encourage dairymen with high producing herds to increase their production.

Date published: 2003-09-05

Pieter Conradie