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I AGRICULTURAL NOTES.

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I AGRICULTURAL NOTES. I BY A PRACTICAL FARMER. I RAILWAY RATES FOR MILK. At the recent meeting of the Council of the British Dairy Farmers' Association, Mr. S. Palgrave Page. vice-president, reported that he had presided over a conference of dele- gates from forty-two kindrd societies, and the jncreased rates for the transit of milk were fully considered. In the opinion of dairy farmers generally, and indeed of all those who have to handle milk, the amount taken out of the gross value of this particular article by the railway companies was already sufficiently high before the new rate came into foroe. Why coal should have been exempted and milk seized upon as a suitable article to put on a very substantial increase nobody can uijdei-staijdi. At the conference the following resolution was unanimously passed and ordered to be forwarded to the railway house, viz. That, considering the importance of cheap distribu- tion of milk to the agricultural interests, and to the health of children in large cities, the railway companies be requested to receive a deputation upon the subject at an early date." A sub-committee has been appointed to pro- ceed with the matter in the interests of the industry, and a substantial sum has been voted to cover preliminary expenses. The hope was expressed that in the event of it coming to legal action the country at large would rise to the occasion and support the Association's funds, and thereby assist in keeping down the cost of the most necessary article of food for the nation's health, and especially for the rising generation. I A CAUSE OF BAD FLAVOURS. Bad flavours in dairy produce are often very difficult to explain or trace to their cause, and (sometimes it has required long and laborious investigation by scientists to ascertain the origin of flavours in particular cases. A simple and obvious cause of bad flavour is the use of vessels that have not been properly cleaned; but the possibility of a bad effect through employing vessels in which the iron is not properly protected by a layer of tin or nickel or enamel may be easily overlooked. An investigation by the experts of the Dairy Section of the United States Agricul- tural Department has shown that very small amounts of iron or copper in the cream cause certain undesirable flavours to increase in in- tensity during storage. These flavours are often designated as "metallic," "oily," or fishy." Experiments were carried out using known quantities varying from 1 to 500 parts to a million parts of cream. The butter was stored and examined at intervals varying from 20 to 187 days. The most noticeable feature was the rapid development of bad flavours in the butter containing the iron. Butter made from cream which had stood in rusty cans developed a peculiar taste easily picked out. The influence of copper was even more marked than that of iron. It is thus demonstrated that if cream is kept in rusty ca.ns or comes in contact with iron or copper during the process of butter- making it may take up iron or copper ;"üm rusty cans, exposed bolt heads, or other metal parts of pasteurisers or churns, in sufficient quantity to affect the flavour of storage butter. The rate of development of the undesirable flavour is greatly accelerated during storage by very small quantities oi these metals. All reputable manufacturers of dairy appa ratus would guarantee their makes against rust of this sort for any reasonable length of time, and would, I am sure, be aaixious to re place any machine that rusted within a short time of its sale. But second-hand niachirie.- carry 110 guarantee, and the buyer would save himself a lot of trouble by testing the machin* before purchase. He may then find the expla nation of the seller's desire to rid himself of the faulty machine or vessel. Inferior and eliea-p makes, of course, carrv their own risks. SHEEP SCAB. Since the year 1896 there has been a steady diminution of the number of outbreaks of thi? nasty disease, thanks very largely to the attitude of the more enlightened farmers to the question of dipping and the support which they have given the authorities in carrying out a compulsory Order. Last yeai there were 236 outbreaks in Great Britain, as against 301 the previous year, and more than ten times as many in 1896. In Ireland it is to be admitted the number has lately shown a rise, being last year 552, as against 373 in 1912. But probably this is principally to be explained by the closer supervision now being exercised in the matter, and by the fact that ih vyears past a large number of cases were never brought under the notice of the authorities. Anyhow, the disease is within measurable distance of eradication, and it is interesting to 6))(1 that, on the suggestion of the Veter- inary Committee of the Royal Agricultural Society of England, a letter has been ad- dressed to the Board of Agriculture express- ing the opinion that as sheep scab has now been brought within comparatively narrow limits, the time has arrived when regulations of a more drastic character should be intro- duced by the Board with a view to the com- plete eradication of this disease from the country. In the course of the discussion on the sub- ject, Mr. Mansell, who proposed the resolu- tion authorising the letter, stated that it was desirable, in sending this letter to the Board, that the society should point out the advan- tages that would arise from the complete eradication of sheep scab in this country, which would be that the quarantine period abroad would be greatly reduced, and any- thing that would reduce q-uarantine would reduce the cost to the importer. He thought it reflected on the British breeder, and it was high time to urge upon the Board 01 Agricul- ture to take drastic measures to get rid of sheep scab now that it had been brought within such narrow limits. t « t FERTILISERS FOR SWEDES. I Trials to test the effect of various artntaiM manures on the swede crop when applied along with a dressing of twelve or fifteen tons per acre of farmyard manure, were con- ducted last year in various parts of Derby- shire under the direction of the Cou-nty Edu- cation Committee. Three different types of soil were experimented upon: (1) A shallow but strong loam overlying limestone; (2) a light loam on gritstone; (3) a mellow loam overlying coal measures. The experiment consisted of a series of eleven plots each t l-20th acre in size. The two end plots re- ceived no artificials. Five plots rece-ived "complete" dressings. The remaining four plots were treated with different forms of phosphatic manures. The most profitable dressing in the whole series proved to be superphosphate alone, applied at the rate of 4 £ cwt. per acre. This increased the crop by 2i tons per acre on the average of the three centres. After ch argi-iig the cost of the manure a profit of 15s. 8d. per acre is due to the use of the dressing. Steamed bone me-al, used at the rate of 2cwt. per acre, gave a profit of 9s. 5d. Thj most profitable of the "complete" dress- inso was the following: R'l')D},J of MIl.

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REVIEW OF THE CORN TRADE.

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I AGRICULTURAL NOTES.