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Why choose the Hereford?

Identity:Throughout its history the Hereford has maintained its distinctive white face and red coat. All cross-bred Hereford cattle feature a white face, a distinct advantage for easier traceability and future predictability.
 
Foraging ability:Herefords are well suited to forage based diets and as grass continues to be the cheapest form of feed, this improves financial returns. Research at Bristol University has shown beef produced off grass has a longer shelf life and better colour, is high in the essential fatty acid omega-3 and has a distinctive taste.
 
Docility: Hereford cattle are famous for their good temperament, a trait which eases management and improves operators safety. As farms continue to cut labour, this will be an increasingly important factor. Less stress during marketing also enhances beef quality.
 
Adaptability: Great phenotype variability means that the Hereford is an animal capable of adapting to all types of production systems and environmental conditions. This is why Hereford genetics have been exported to all regions of the world. Their genetics having been used equally in pedigree herds and cross breeding programmes.
 
Ease of calving: Herefords have traditionally been used in the dairy sector because of their easy calving; resulting in an increased calf crop, viable cross-bred calves and reduced veterinary costs.During the past ten years finishing weights of Hereford sired progeny have increased significantly, averaging in excess of 300kg deadweight. However calf birth weights and ease of calving have remained constant, providing a welfare friendly environment for breeding females.
 
Fertility: Herefords are prolific breeders, an important characteristic for any breed as it affects profitability more than any other factor. Herefords weaning percentages are consistently in excess of 90%. Hereford stock bulls and breeding females also have a great longevity producing thrifty calves for many years.
 
Ease of management: The number of Hereford herds in the UK continues to expand at a phenomenal rate for many reasons, not least because of their ease of management from ease of calving to ease of handling.
 
Quality beef: Herefords finished off grassland produce an excellent 'marbled' beef that is in great demand both within the UK and for export due to its distinctive flavour and renowned eating quality. It commands a premium at retail level when sold through the branded beef schemes and delivers increased returns to producers. Waitrose commenced with a Hereford Beef Scheme in the late 1990s and sales have increased significantly year on year.
 
Breedplan international beef recording scheme: Breeding traits, principally calving ease, growth and carcase quality are recorded within Breedplan, a universally recognised livestock performance programme. Performance data for pedigree cattle can be viewed on the Society's website www.herefordcattle.org
 

Herefords build base of large scale suckler business
For the Hull family at Turncole Farm, Southminster, Essex, the Hereford breed has for a long time built the basis of their large scale cattle enterprise.
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Hereford sweeper firm favourite for large scale dairy
Breeding sweeper bulls to use on his dairy cows gives milk producer Laurence Harris control over herd biosecurity. For two decades, his breed of choice has been the Hereford.
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Hereford sire reduces cost
Costs have been significantly reduced, and the management of his commercial suckler herd has been simplified for north Lancashire foot trimmer Allan Riley with the purchase of a quality Hereford bull.
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Beef quality cornerstone of extensive beef system
The Hereford breed underpins the life young farmer and commoner, Tom Hordle, is building in the New Forest and the quality of beef he is producing. 
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Hereford out-performs all other breeds on Cotswold Edge
The Hereford breed has taken Alec and Mark Grey by surprise at Symonds Hall Farm near Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire, where its performance has outstripped that of any other breed they have ever tried.
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Breed newcomers take showring by storm
Although only in their fifth year of showing pedigree Herefords, the Bowen family are making a name for theirselves on the show season, with their career peaking on taking the breed championship at the 2019 Royal Welsh Show.
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Argentinian blood builds base of top herd
Having bred two UK sires of the year, Carolyn Fletcher is known for breeding quality pedigree cattle. She explains how she has moulded her herd over time.
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Show circuit success for recently founded Moralee
Established just eight years ago, the Moralee herd has taken the Hereford world by storm, turning out regular showring champions and pedigree sale toppers, as well as producing quality beef for direct sales. Hannah Park reports.
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Coley herd produce best bull to date
Being in the breed for 14 years, Heather Whittaker's Coley herd has now taken the Hereford bull of the year title on two occassions, this year with Coley 1 Pilot. 
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Young breeder takes horned female title
Having only been a member of the Hereford Cattle Society since 2016, Bethan Hutchinson is making her mark in the showring, having taken the horned female of the year title in 2018.
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Wilsons win herd of the year while show herd streak continues
Romany Herefords are famed throughout the UK and beyond for their show ring success but also their commerical capabilities.
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Grass-based system brings herd competition success in County Armagh
With eight years of Hereford experience under his belt, Jonhn Conlon, Co Armagh, took the 2016 reserve national herd of the year copmetition title.
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Understanding EBV accuracy
Many members have been making use of Breedplan EBVs in their breeding programme, but time needs to be taken to consider the accuracies of these figures. Dr Brad Crook at ABRI explains more. 
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Daughters or direct - understanding calving ease
Breedplan displays two calving ease figures - direct and daughters. Dr Nicky Turner explains how the two EBVs work.
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Why are EBVs important when buying a bull?
The purchase of a stock bull is one of the most important decisions a pedigree breeder and beef producer can make and represents an investment in genetic material that will have a major impact on the financial performance of the herd.
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The Stress of Weaning for the Calf
With more pedigree Hereford Breeders’ moving from Autumn to Spring calving, the following article may be of interest. Here SAC’s Basil Lowman points out some of the fundamental differences and pitfalls between the two seasonal calving periods.
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Why do dairy farmers select Hereford bulls? Some experiences of a farm vet
It is said that the bull is half the herd – for beef farms that statement is true, and in more ways than can be discussed in this article. However, when buying bulls for a beef herd there are only a few reasons that a farmer would give as to why they made their decision to purchase that particular animal: genetics, pedigree, stature, confirmation or price would be a few of these.
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