The St Senara Herd is owned by Peter Cattran and is based on the Treveglos Farm in Zennor Village in West Cornwall right on the Atlantic coast.
The herd was originally developed and managed by Geoffrey Hollow, but has been in the capable hands of Martin Toman assisted by wife Tracy for the last three years.
The farm is managed “organically” with the milk being sold to OMSCO, who are unable to sell all of their available milk as Organic and so a lower price is returned to the Producer than that expected at the start of the two year conversion period.
Despite the lower than expected returns Peter Cattran is committed to the Organic system and continues to farm in this manner.
The farm is part of a Stewardship scheme whereby Landscape values of the Rock outcrops and stonewalls are given a high priority. This creates problems for normal farming operations, such as weed topping or ploughing, but despite this Martin and Tracey spend a lot of time maintaining the farm and annual forage crops are grown to extend the grazing season and Red Clover leys are sown for silage production and White clover leys are used for grazing.
The cows are milked through a herringbone parlour with twice daily milk weights recorded automatically to the computer in the office. The St. Senara herd is entered in the Annual Cornwall Club herd competitions and has twice recently being judged as the Best Herd Overall for a combination of Production and Inspection as well as having the best Individual cow in the Competition.
Martin Toman purchased a yearling bull from the Trewarnevas herd to use as herd sire and this bull Trewarnevas Precious Lorry,was a son of Trotacre Mercury Lorry out of Trewarnevas Fayettes Willows Precious recently rescored as Ex 92 as a fifth calver, and she in turn is out of the Royal Champion Maple Leaf Fayette Laurinda Ex 94.
The first daughters of T Precious Lorry have just started calving and he has a VG 85 heifer.
T Precious Lorry also has another heifer scored GP 84
The bull was sold as a three year old to the 400 cow Sunninghill Park herd in Cumbria where he was used heavily before unfortunately slipping and breaking a leg.
St. Senara is always a pleasure to visit as there are usually some really good young cows emerging and this reflects the quality of the foundation cows selected by Geoffrey Hollow but also the quiet expertise of Martin Toman who knows much more about his cows than he lets on.