THERE WAS a record entry of cattle and sheep for this year’s 25th anniversary show in the UK’s biggest live/dead carcase competition, the Scottish National Premier Meat Exhibition – but none achieved the live/dead double.

Held as usual at Scotbeef's modern abattoir on the outskirts of Bridge of Allan, there were 300 cattle entries and 250 lambs judged on the hoof and on the hook and as usual it was all sponsored by quality retailer, M and S.

The supreme beef carcase was pretty close to being a double champion, having been placed first live, though not champion on the hoof. On the hook, the Angus cross steer hung up at 372kg, with a U+3 grade and a killing out of 60%.

This was one of a handful consigned by Stephanie Ewart and her partner, Adam Housley, Easter Dounie, Ballintuim, and all bought for rearing on her smallholding for possible entry to this event. It was bought in the spring from P Cooper and Sons, Govals, Forfar, through the store ring at Forfar Mart as a light steer of 395kg.

Ms Ewart was also reserve in the live show with another one of her small herd and at home she also breeds ‘True Blue’ Leicesters.

According to the judge, Richard Moore, the former MD of Linden Foods, of Northern Ireland, which is also a M and S supplier, the champion was a ‘carcase with everything going for it.’

“I came with the intention of picking something I’s like to sell myself and that’s what I did, though there was only a cigarette paper between the leading contenders,” he said. “This was an ideal butcher’s carcase and I was trying to pick one with a wee bit more cover – and that’s a trait maybe supermarkets should be looking more for.

“If I had any criticism of the show, it was there were far too many lean carcases ... though I have to admit that the weather has made finishing animals properly a bit more difficult this year.”

Runner-up for the title was Andy Ingram, East Comalegy, Drumblade, with a bought-in Limousin cross heifer which tipped the scales at 369kg deadweight, also grading U+3 and with a 60.5% KO.

John Thomson’s intensive beef sheds at Smallburn, Longhorsley, Morpeth, was well quoted throughout the prize list, including winning the Premio Speciale Italiano award from the Milan Butchers Confederation.

A regular consignor to Scotbeef for M and S – he sends up around 80 per week – his award was for a Limousin cross which graded E3 and hung up at 347kg. Bought at St Boswells as a suckled calf, this was managed like the rest of his finishing cattle on a TMR ration using home-grown cereals, which they are also on when they are at grass.

His daughter, Jill, also won the senior section of the young producers competition. This was with a similarly reared Limousin cross heifer which hung up at 364kg, grading -U3.

The junior winner was Robbie Wills, whose Limousin cross was bought from his uncle, Allan Turnbull, Meadowend, Clackmannan. This was a 375kg steer carcase of U+3.

The best cow carcase was a 447kg Limousin cross from Auchtydore Farms, Easterton of Lenabo, Mintlaw.

The Taylors, Jimmy and his mother Christine, from Easter Ochtermuthill, Muthill, Crieff, produced the overall champion lambs carcase, plus the one best suited to the export trade.

Both of those lambs were home-bred and almost pure Beltex, with the champion weighing 22kg and grading E2, while the export champion was a 21.5kg E3L carcase.

Beltex genetics were also behind the reserve supreme, a 21.2kg E3L lamb from Mrs Mary Dunlop, Corstane, Broughton, Biggar.

From the YF section, champion senior was Robert Rennie, Sydenham, Ednam, with a 17.4kg E3H carcase, while the junior class was won by Gary Whitston, Haswellsykes, Peebls.

Other awards:

Blackface – Tommy and Craig MacPherson, Pitsundry, Bankfoot, with a wedder bred by Gordon Stewart, Killin, which weighed 18.5kg, graded U4L; reserve – Hugh Hamilton, Glenmanna, Thornhill, Dumfries, with a home-bred U4L 18.6kg lamb.

Cheviot – Alex and John Paul, Ballingall Mill, Leslie, Glenrothes, with a 16.9kg, U3H lamb and reserve with a 20.2kg, U4H lamb – both bought off Ashmore, Bridge of Cally.

Suffolk – Jim Kennedy, Carrick Primestock, Maybole, with a 20.7, E3L lamb champion and reserve with a slightly lighter lamb of the same grade.

M and S producers’ A-A finishing competition:

1, JF Johnston and Sons, Morpeth; 2, J Rhind and Son, Kinloss; 3, HR Mowat, Orkney. Young producer leaders – Isla King. M and S Farmer of the Year – Iain and John Emslie, Little Barras, Stonehaven.

LEADING awards:


A-A steer light – 1, J and R Stanger, South Seatter, Yesnaby, Orkney (334kg, -U3 grade, 57.9% KO); 2, J Thomson, Smallburn, Longhorsley, Morpeth (353kg, -U3, 60.4%); 3, A Cruickshank, South View, Keith (330kg, -U2, 58.4%).

A-A steer heavy – 1 and champion, S Ewart and Son, Easter Dounie, Ballintuim (372kg, U+3, 60.1%); 2, A Wilson, Greenhead, Rescobie, Forfar (360kg, -U3, 58.7%).

A-A heifer – 1, J and B Muir, Honeyneuk, Maud (372kg, U+3, 61.3%); 2, E Buchan, Glenisla, Torphins, Banchory (342kg, -U3, 59%); 3, JH and NT Turnbull, Meadowend, Clackmannan (301kg, -U3, 58.5%).

AOB native steer – 1, J alder, West White Hill, Kirikwhelpington, Newcastle (386kg, -U2, 61.1%, Shorthorn cross); 2, T and A Taylor, Heatheryhall, Thankerton, Biggar (344kg, -U2, 61.6%, Shorthorn cross); 3, AJ Ingram, East Comalegy, Drumblade (327kg, -U2, 59.5%, Shorthorn cross).

AOB native heifer – 1, J Alder (343kg, -U3, 59.9%, Shorthorn cross); 2, A Purdon and Partners, Stravenhouse, Carluke (312kg, -U2, 61.2%, South Devon cross); 3, WA Fettes, Braes of Enzie, Buckie (368kg, -U3, 60.3%, Shorthorn cross).

AOB continental light steer – 1, T and A Taylor (370kg, U+3, 61.8%, Lim cross); 2, DS and RC Taylor, Easter Ochtermuithill, Muthill, Crieff (362kg, U+2, 60.8%, BB cross); 3, G and J Davie, Harvies Mailing, Denny (349kg, U+2, 61.2%, BB cross).

AOB continental medium steer – 1, WA Fettes (376kg, U+3, 61.2%, Char cross); 2, Adam, Craigton, Clackmannan (367kg, U+2, 60.2%, Lim cross); 3, JH and NT Turnbull (407kg, E2, 65.6%. BB cross).

AOB continental heavy steer – 1, J Watson, Pityot, Bridge of Muchalls, Stonehaven (406.9kg, U+2, 63.6%, Lim cross); 2, P Alexander, Mains of Mause, Blairgowrie (386kg, U+3, 60.9%, Lim cross); 3, J and J Wylie, Knockhouse, Crossford, Dunfermline (391kg, U+3, 60.2%, Lim cross).

AOB continental light heifer – 1, WA Fettes (348.6kg, E3, 60.6%, Char cross); 2, J Thomson (347kg, E3, 59.9%, Lim cross); 3, F Murray, East Horton, Wooler (295.7kg, -U3, 58.2%, Lim cross).

AOB continental heavy heifer – 1 and reserve, AJ Ingram (369kg, E3, 62.9%, Lim cross); 2, T and A Taylor (392kg, E3, 62.9%, Lim cross); 3, Ross Brothers, Wardhead, Strichen (362kg, -U3, 60.5%, BB cross).

Prime cow – 1, Auchtydore Farms (447kg, U+2, 60.8%, Lim cross); 2, N Forsyth and Son, Oswie, Whithorn, Newton Stewart (483kg, U+3, 63.2%, BB cross); 3, A Purdon (524kg, U+3, 59.2%, Lim).

Young livestock producers junior – Steers – R Wills, Meadowend (375.4, U+3, 59.4%, Lim cross); 2, Miss H Paul, Newbigging, Carnock (369kg, U+1, 60.5%, Lim cross); 3, H Gordon, Clochnahill, Stonehaven (370kg, U+2, 61.6%, Lim cross). Heifers – 1, H Gordon (376kg, U+3, 61.6%, Lim cross); 2, R Wills (345kg, U+2, 64.5%, Lim cross); 3, Miss H Paul (356kg, -U3, 57.4%, Lim cross.

Young livestock producers senior – Steers – 1, G Stanger, South Seatter, Sandwick, Orkney (378kg, U+3, 60.9%, Lim cross); 2, Miss B Alexander, Mains of Mause (354kg, U+2, 59.3%, Lim cross); 3, Miss J MacKinnon, West Dron Cottage, Bridge of earn (375kg, U+3, 60.4%, Lim cross). Heifers – 1, Miss J Thomson, Smallburn (364kg, -U3, 61%, Lim crosss); 2, L Paul, Newbigging (344kg, -U3, 58.1%, Lim cross); 3, L Emslie, Grains of Fetteresso (314kg, R4L, 61.5%, Lim cross).


Blackface light – 1 and reserve BF, H Hamilton, Glenmanna, Thornhill, Dumfries (18.6kg dw, U4L grade, 52.5% KO); 2, B and J Menzies, Baledmund, Tulliemet, Ballinluig (17.3kg, U3H, 47.5%); 3, JW Paul and Sons (18.7kg, R3H, 54%).

Blackface heavy – 1 and champion BF, T and C MacPherson, Pitsundry, Bankfoot (18.5kg, U4L, 49.2%); 2, JM Cullens, Dollarbank, Dollar (20.5kg, U4H, 50.7%); 3, H Hamilton (18.9kg, R4L, 50.3%).

Cheviot light – 1 and champion Cheviot, JW Paul and Sons (16.9kg, U3H, 47.5%); 2 and reserve Cheviot, JW Paul and Sons (20.2kg, U4H, 52.9%); 3, WA MacKinnon (17.6kg, U3H, 48.4%).

Cheviot heavy – 1, DS and RC Taylor 20.2kg, U4L, 50%; 2, T and J Linton, Sornfallow, Wiston, Biggar (20.3kg, U3H, 50.5%); 3, WA MacKinnon (19.8kg, U3H, 50.3%).

Suffolk light – 1 and champion Suffolk, Carrick Primestock, Lyonston, Maybole (20.7kg, E3L, 59.1%); 2 and reserve Suffolk, Carrick Primestock (20.1kg, E3L, 57.8%); 3, G Whyte, Pett, Muthill (19.9kg, E4L, 51.6%).

Suffolk heavy – 1, JW Paul and Sons (19.1kg, E3L, 48.7%); 2, JW Paul and Sons (20.7kg, E2, 52.8%); 3, S Barr and Son, Woodhouse, Manor, Peebles (21.4kg, U4H, 51.7%).

AOB light – 1, MM Stewart, Bortherstone, Melrose (18.1kg, E2, 52.9%); 2, Mrs M Dunlop, Corstane, Broughton, Biggar (19.7kg, E3L, 57.3%); 3, Carrick Primestock (16.7kg, E1, 49.1%).

AOB medium – 1, WJ Stevenson, Coilavoulin, Pitlochry (21.5kg, E3H, 56.6%); 2, J Guthrie, Cuiltsburn, Muthill (19.9kg, E3H, 52.9%); 3, Mrs M Dunlop (20.6kg, E3H, 56.6%).

AOB heavy – 1, R Templeton, Carslae, Wigtown, Newton Stewart (21kg, E2, 54.7%); 2, A Baillie, Carstairs Mains, Carstairs, Lanark (21.6kg, E3L, 56.3%); 3, JL McMillan, Carse of Clary, Newton Stewart (21.3kg, E3L, 54.6%).

AOB super heavy – 1 and champion, DS and RC Taylor (22kg, E2, 54.2%); 2 and reserve, Mrs M Dunlop (21.2kg, E3L, 52.2%); 3, JR Hunter, Luckenburn, Slamannan, Falkirk (22kg, E3H, 56.7%).

Young producers lamb junior – 1, G Whitston, Haswellsykes, Peebles (19.5kg, E3H, 50.8%); 2, Miss O Smith, Gibsleys, Saline, Fife (19.1kg, U3H, 50%); 3, M Scholes, Quoydandy, St Ola, Kirkwall (21kg, R3H, 50%).

Young producers lamb senior – 1, R Rennie, Sydenham, Ednam (17.4kg, E3H, 51.2%); 2, J Taylor, Easter Ochtermuthill (21.8kg, E4L, 59.9%); 3, O Shearman, West Menstrie (20.1kg, E3L, 49.8%).