FarmWizard Announces Deal with Africa's largest retailors

Innovative herd management software developed by FarmWizard in Belfast will be used to provide traceability functionality on hundreds of South African farms, following a deal agreed on a recent Invest Northern Ireland trade mission to the country.

FarmWizard reached agreement with Checkers, one of South Africa’s leading hyper/supermarket chains, for its Internet herd management system to be used to provide traceability and performance management for its range of “Checkers Angus Beef”.

The agreement, the company’s first business in South Africa, was negotiated by Terry Canning, FarmWizard’s Managing Director, who pioneered the system, when the Invest NI mission visited Cape Town this month.

The agreement, between FarmWizard and Africa’s largest retail grocer, follows an extensive trial by Checkers of the unique and award winning FarmWizard technology.

Mr Canning said: “With a growing economy, especially with next year’s World Cup, South African tastes are becoming more sophisticated. Checkers has recognised the need for an effective traceability system for Angus herds. The retailer recognises that our system gives them an important competitive edge”

“Embryo Africa, our representative in South Africa lined up the trial with Checkers that was successful and has led to the new agreement. Invest NI is helping with support to market the system in key international markets and we expect to see further sales in Africa and elsewhere.” 

FarmWizard's Terry Canning with Tracey Meharg MD of InvestNI, BJ Botha, International Rugby Player from South Africa and Awesome the Aberdeen Angus bull with Alwyn his breeder

Dirk Diemont, General Manager of Checkers Meat Market said: “We wanted to be the first South African retailer to be able to provide full transparent traceability from farm to fork for our prime Checkers Angus beef brand and FarmWizard provided us with the technology to do just that.”

Dr Vicky Kell, Invest NI Trade Director and leader of the most recent mission to Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town, congratulated FarmWizard on its success in South Africa.

“FarmWizard is now successfully exploiting in global markets highly innovative software technology that it developed to meet the demand in the UK and Europe for safer beef products.

‘We are working with the company to help management maximise the business potential of its extensive investment in innovation.”

Established in 2004 by Mr Canning, FarmWizard is a web-based herd management package which is easy to use and provides real time access and easy integration by farmers of animal data, thereby facilitating traceability

The technology has facilitated the creation of an on-line community in the UK of over 1,000 farmers and 750,000 animals. In the past year FarmWizard has been adopted by the largest beef and dairy farms in Scotland, Dovecote Park “Dedicated to Waitrose” Cattle Connect scheme and a major Welsh sheep RFID project. The software development behind this product has been part funded by the European Regional Development Fund

FarmWizard chosen by Dovecote Park "Dedicated to Waitrose"

Dovecote Park, dedicated suppliers of beef to Waitrose this week announced that it would be utilising the online herd management service FarmWizard for management of all cattle participating in its “Cattle Connect” scheme.
The Cattle Connect Scheme, originally established in 2008, was set up to develop an integrated beef supply chain with the focus on consistency and stability throughout.
“FarmWizard was the only Herd Management system that could provide us with lifetime traceability of cattle health and performance” said Simon Ingle, Cattle Connect scheme co-ordinator.
“The system is web based which means that as farmers record cattle movements, health and performance data I can access that information in real time. This level of integration helps to improve consistency of supply providing full traceability and represents a great step forward in supply chain management” he added
“We are delighted that Dovecote Park have chosen to utilise our technology on this project” said Anthony Warmington FarmWizard’s Business Development Manager for England and Wales.

“The Cattle Connect scheme is an innovative producer/supplier partnership and we are happy to be able to help to improve communications across that partnership”, he added.
FarmWizard provides a complete solution to beef and dairy farmers managing all required legislative and performance based records. Veterinary medicine books, beef costings and performance records may be maintained providing farmers with a complete grasp of their costs allied to the performance being achieved by their stock. Information may be recorded using passport scanners, PDAs, Electronic ID readers and in addition integrated fully with TruTest and Iconix weigh heads, all relevant information can be uploaded automatically to BCMS.

Terry Canning demonstrated EID data collection equipment to Dovecote Park Suppliers

FarmWizard win Welsh Sheep EID Tender

 NORTHERN Ireland business beat off competition from UK companies to win a Welsh government tender for an IT solution to demonstrate the benefits of electronic identification in sheep.

FarmWizard, founded by Terry Canning, and animal-tagging company Dalton Electronic Identification (EID) Systems developed the winning IT solution for Welsh government’s technology, agriculture and greater efficiencies (TAG) EID project.

The TAG project aims to improve the profitability of Welsh sheep farms through technology. EID technology for sheep will become law at the end of this year.

FarmWizard and Daltons’ solution combines EID tags, readers, web based software and equipment from leading manufacturers to deliver time saving and performance monitoring benefits to sheep farmers.

Mr Canning said: “We intend to demonstrate how we can harness this technology to provide real business benefit, following the introduction of mandatory sheep EID technology in the UK at the start of this year.”

Electronic tags now provide error free individual identification, making the process of managing treatments, weights and performance recording for the whole flock achievable without being labour intensive. As a result, farmers are more inclined to record animal data on a regular basis leading to more accurate performance monitoring of the flock

If regularly weighed, lambs can be selected using their electronic ear tag or I-Tag upon reaching their optimal sale weight. Those not yet ready are drafted into holding pens to be turned out to the field until ready.

With weights recorded and uploaded into FarmWizard it’s easy to build performance information on a flock. This allows farmers to make better buy, cull or breed decisions when analyzing the weight gain charts and reports available to provide a better return on cost.

Pictured below, Terry Canning with Welsh Assembly Minister for Rural Affairs Elin Jones