The King and Prince Carl Philip attend Stenhammar Day
Göran Persson during his talk at Stenhammar Day. Photo: royalcourt.se
On Friday 31 May, The King and Prince Carl Philip attended Stenhammar Day, which was organised by the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the Stenhammar Estate.
This year's theme was economy and profitability.
Stenhammar. Photo: royalcourt.se
The King opened the event by welcoming all those present, and reflected on the past year at Stenhammar and this year's theme:
"The recent meat scandals highlighted deficiencies in the food chain — from farm to fork. Despite the fact that the importance of climate efficiency, quality, safety and animal welfare are frequently emphasised, the focus is often further down the value chain on low price. Most people want climate-efficient Swedish farming, and yet many people still choose to buy imported food.
"Sweden can act as a good example. Perhaps something of a role model for the rest of the world? It's a matter of thinking globally and buying locally. That's what my colleagues at Stenhammar and I would like to think, here in this part of the world where I feel so very much at home."
Lisa Sennerby Forsse from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences then spoke about how research carried out at Stenhammar within areas such as feed consumption, hoof health and calving has produced results.
Göran Persson during his speech at Stenhammar Day. Photo: royalcourt.se
Former party leader and Prime Minister Göran Persson, who is now a farmer and meat producer at Övre Torp Farm in Södermanland, spoke on the subject "No sustainability without profitability". He explained how those working at Övre Torp Farm have identified an opportunity to market directly to the end-customer.
Calle Ramvall, Quality and Environmental Manager at meat importer North Trade, spoke on the subject of quality and differences in different parts of the world. For example, China imports pigs' ears but exports chicken breasts. Calle explained that exchanging "by-products" can be one way of reducing waste.
Pernilla Salevid, project manager at LRF Jönköping, and Associate Professor Sven-Olov Daunfeldt from HUI Research then spoke about keeping production costs down and how the sustainable concept is to produce and sell food with added value. They both mentioned the link between profitability and focusing on high quality.
Professor Urban Emanuelsson from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Alnarp gives a guided tour of Stenhammar's land. Photo: royalcourt.se
The afternoon included a tour, guided by Professor Urban Emanuelsson from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) in Alnarp. During the tour of the nature reserve, Associate Professor Karl-Ivar Kumm from SLU in Skara explained that there has been a dramatic reduction in the number of farms and the amount of agricultural land over the last century. In 1920 there were around 400,000 farms with grazing livestock, whereas the number is just 20,000 today. Jan Chirico, a researcher from the National Veterinary Institute, spoke about ticks on animals and humans.
The King at Stenhammar Nature Reserve. Photo: royalcourt.se
Professor Björn Olsén from Uppsala University, who also took part in this year's Royal Colloquium, talked about infection and antibiotic resistance. He emphasised the importance of stopping the consumption of antibiotics. One of many ways of doing so is through free-range animals, since when any creatures live in close proximity to each other — whether chickens, rats or people — diseases spread. He added that Swedish vets were quick to realise that the overconsumption of antibiotics is a problem for the ecosystem.
Finally, Professor Anna Näsholm from SLU in Uppsala explained that robust animals pay for themselves.
About Stenhammar DayIn spring 2006, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the Stenhammar Estate began a partnership with the aim of generating knowledge for the development of grazing-based meat production, for the benefit of both the industry in general and Stenhammar's own operations. This partnership relates to both research and training initiatives.
Sven-Olle Jansson, who is responsible for the animals and their care, scratches prize-winning bull Junior Helios av Mattarp. The bull won Best in Show at the Mila i Malmö agricultural fair this year. Photo: royalcourt.se
Manager Anders Fredriksson during the excursion in the nature reserve. Photo: royalcourt.se
Since April 2012, Anders Fredriksson has been a manager and steward at Stenhammar. Tell us about your work at Stenhammar. "I'm a manager at Stenhammar AB, and I divide my time between working in the stables and dealing with strategic issues. Working with 300 ditches is a real challenge!" What does Stenhammar Day mean to you? "It's an excellent opportunity to focus on conditions within farming and to promote our partnership with SLU."
About StenhammarStenhammar is located in the heart of Södermanland, just outside Flen. Here, modern agriculture and forestry are carried out. Stenhammar was left to the Swedish state in 1903 in the will of Robert von Kræmer, to be used by a member of the Royal Court and with right of inheritance to the Crown. Prince Wilhelm was the first state tenant at Stenhammar until his death in 1965, when tenantship was taken over by the then Crown Prince Carl Gustaf.
Prince Wilhelm on the steps at Stenhammar with his poodle, in the mid-1940s. Photo: The archive of the Bernadotte Library
Prince Wilhelm outside Stenhammar in the 1930s. Photo: The archive of the Bernadotte Library