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Littleton Farm - Moving with the Times

Robert Dodds, aged 36, is a fourth-generation farmer from Gatehouse of Fleet in the south west of Scotland. He runs Littleton Farm, which consists of 1800 farmable acres and the dairy currently contains a total of 850 cows, with plans to increase this number to 1500 over the next five years. The farm produces around seven million litres of milk per year.

 

South of Scotland - Innovation Projects - Bringing businesses Together and Knowledge Links for Business - Linking Entrepreneurs

There has been some heavy investment in the farm over recent years, so Robert is very keen to grow the business and take advantage of opportunities brought by new technologies, whilst remaining very conscious of its carbon footprint. He’s also keen to use online and social media as a way of raising awareness of the farm and what it does, amongst milk buyers and the general public alike.


Robert says that the Linking Entrepreneurs project has been a fantastic learning platform for growing the business. Attending a meeting about renewables gave him the confidence he needed to push forward a project which will lead to three wind turbines supplying the entire power requirement for the farm from 2012. As Littleton is 140 metres above sea level, it has a very high average wind speed, so this is the ideal way for the farm to reduce its electrical consumption. Robert is also at the planning stages for a small hydro scheme with the Gatehouse community, which has come about with the help of Euan McConnell from EMC Engineering, whom Robert met through linking Entrepreneurs.


Robert is also embracing online and social media, having previously been a bit of a cynic. A Linking Entrepreneurs meeting supported by Chris Walker from the Selkirk Arms Hotel and Finlay Carson from Carson Management Systems inspired him to construct a website, which will be used to let the general public and milk buyers find out more about Littleton Farm. There will also be a live webcam for all the dairy sheds, so customers will be able to experience all the milking action and see the origin of their daily delivery.


Robert says: “Networking with Linking Entrepreneurs has had a direct impact on the future strategy of the farm, and I’m delighted that I’ve been able to benefit from the experience and mutual support of its members.”
A fine example of Linking Entrepreneurs working at its best!

Logos: Interface - The knowledge connection for business | Scottish Enterprise | Europe and Scotland - European Regional Development Fund Investing in your future | Targeting Innovation | Fusion

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