Suffolk Show 2011: Red Poll celebrates global revival

THE triumphant revival of the once endangered Suffolk cattle breed the Red Poll was underlined yesterday as a delegation of more than 70 breeders from around the world came to the Suffolk Show.

Representatives from seven countries, the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, South African, Uruguay and Jamaica were in the UK for the Red Poll world congress, and took time out to watch the Red Poll breed competition yesterday.

The theme of their congress is the Red Poll’s place in a changing agricultural environment.

Host UK chairman, Richard Dawes, who is based near Milton Keynes, said this was relevant at the moment because of the “great attributes” of the dual purpose breed, including its ability to thrive on poor pasture, which had been the reason why it was exported for so many years to arid parts of the world.

“It got on the endangered list and the reason for that was it was dual purpose,” he said.

“Now you are paid for supporting the environment so instead of maximising production you want to lower your input costs and the Red Poll is ideal to do that because it is the best converter of forage.”