Although beef and sheep producers often have very little control over
the prices they get for their cattle or lambs, they can go some way to controlling their costs of production. In order to do this, however, production costs and performance need to be monitored.
AHDB (formally EBLEX) provide a free service called Stocktake. This gives detailed and accurate information on the financial efficiency of a commercial enterprise, allowing farmers to monitor and benchmark their performance. Data is collected from participating beef and sheep enterprises, and is used to draw cost and performance comparisons between similar enterprises. Comparisons can be made down to net margin level, and at individual enterprise level for mixed farms. This secure service is open to all English levy payers at no extra cost.
In order to collect the data, a trained regional officer will spend around half a day assembling the basic costs information with the farmer. Once the data has been analysed the farmer will receive a report highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of their enterprise compared to similar ones across England. Regional officers are available to help farmers interpret the results and to guide them towards sources of information enabling them to make