Around 400 head of the finest cattle in the UK from seven breeds will be on view at Borderway UK Dairy Expo, on Saturday, March 14, where some £15,000 of prize money is up for grabs.

The event, which returns to Borderway Exhibition Centre, Carlisle, for a ninth year showcases the elite of the global dairy industry – linking farmers, exhibitors, dairy experts and the next generation of dairy farmers.

Out with the show cattle, this massive event which is a major platform for business and is free to attend, features the latest genetics, science and technology, with another bumper line-up of trade stands and company attendees.

Already, there is an A-Z of companies and organisations features accountancy, breeding, buildings, engineering, equipment, feeding, financial, genetics, legal, technology, and veterinary – all there to provide advice and support, and to help farmers and breeders plan for the future. Many of the exhibitors will also be on hand to demonstrate the use of their products first-hand.

This year, there will also be a key focus on health and safety in farming, with a programme of health and safety presentations and demonstrations to help visitors improve their own on-farm safety awareness.

It is nevertheless that quality of dairy cattle on parade that attracts most visitors and this year there are 70 classes across the seven breed sections – Holstein, Ayrshire, Jersey, Dairy Shorthorn, Red and White, and Brown Swiss. The event also hosts the British Friesian National Show.

For the exhibitors, winning adds to the reputation of the herd, and makes its livestock more valuable in the marketplace.

Last year's show also produced a new record, when the prestigious champion of champions accolade, was presented to the massive Holstein cow, Sahara-Sanchez Ambrosia 3, for an unprecedented third time. She is owned by Mark and Sue Nutsford and Michael and Barbara Hollins from Cheshire.

This year’s four judges travel from North America, Canada, and across the UK are all highly respected.

Yan Jacobs, from Quebec Canada, will judge the Holstein, Brown Swiss and Dairy Shorthorn classes; Pat Conroy, from Indiana USA will be putting the Ayrshire, Jersey and Red and White through their paces; Brian Miller from Somerset UK will place the National British Friesian Show and Amy Miller from Evesham, UK will be selected the winners in the International Showmanship class.

“We always attract such a high calibre of judges thanks to the increasing reputation of the internationally acclaimed Borderway UK Dairy Expo," said David Pritchard, event organiser and joint managing director at Harrison and Hetherington, said:

“This year is no exception, when our impressive line-up of judges joins us to celebrate the very best in UK breeding and genetics. The quality of animals at this event is always second-to-none so we truly value our judges’ knowledge and eye-for-detail, that ensures we can identify the very best of the dairy-world.”

Yan has judged all over Canada and was born and raised on Jacobs Farm in Quebec – a farm he now owns with his father, Jean Jacobs and sister Ysabel Jacobs, where they are currently milking 215 cows. The farm has been eight times Premier Breeder at World Dairy Expo in Wisconsin in the States and eight times at Royal Winter Fair in Toronto, Canada. They have bred and owned 94 All-Canadian nominations and 60 All-American nominations.

Pat has been judging cattle throughout his career. From Indiana in the USA, he markets high-end type and commercial cattle, both domestically and internationally. He is also co-owner of Genesis Genetics in Mexico, which specialises in identifying genetic issues and solutions for cattle breeders. Pat owns 60-90 registered Holsteins and Jerseys a small registered herd of Angus owned in partnership.

British Friesian judge, Brian Miller from Somerset, is part of family partnership that farms 450 acres and owns the Moorshard herd comprising 240 Holsteins and 20 Brown Swiss cows averaging 10,500kg 4.2% on two times milking regime, with 90 Excellent-classified cows. No stranger to the show ring, Brian has judged the Holstein classes at several major UK and Ireland dairy events.

Amy Miller is from the home of Shanael Holstein’s where her father Michael and two brothers Paul and Steven run a 600-cow dairy herd. Another well-known face in the show ring, she has won showmanship classes at the Young Members Association, All Britain National Calf Show and National Holstein show. Amy also continues to play a big part in Holstein Young Breeders as the West Midland Co-ordinator and has also judged at numerous shows

Acknowledging individuals who are key to the continuing success of UK Dairy is the presence of The John Dennison Lifetime Achievement Award, which is now in its seventh year and presented by the family of John Dennison of Cumbria,

Last year’s winner was Bill Nadin from Sterndale Holsteins, based in Derbyshire. This industry accolade is held in the highest esteem and already entries are being received by the judging panel for 2020.

David concluded: “Borderway UK Dairy Expo is a unique event specifically aimed at the best in the dairy industry. Its reputation has continued to grow year-on-year to become the event for dairy farmers, and for the wider industry as a whole.

“It has and continued to be a challenging year for the farming community, so as we move into the new decade, it will be imperative that we pull together to drive forward the dairy industry so that we remain a progressive force. Borderway UK Dairy Expo 2020 is the perfect environment to ensure that we can provide the right information to dairy farmers to ensure that they can future-proof their businesses.”