TRACTORS that can drive on their own may seem like something from a science fiction film but for one farm in Kemble it is an everyday occurrence.

The 2,000 acre Kemble Farms site has been recognised at the Food and Farming Industry Awards for its use of new and sophisticated technology, such as self driven tractors.

David Ball, manager at Kemble Farms, said it meant a lot for the site to be singled out by other working farmers.

He said: “I think it is great that we have won a national award that recognises the way we approach farming and food production.”

The farm, which was taken over by the Bathurst Estate last year, uses the latest GPS technology to remotely steer its tractors.

Using satellites to control the tractors ensures that no part of a crop is missed out and that every part of the field is tended to equally.

David said: “We were one of the first farms in the country to start using this sort of technology but it has become a lot more commonplace now.”

He also explained that the dairy herd at Kemble Farms are fed an electronic pill that lies in the cow’s stomach and monitors the acidity levels of its milk.

David explained that knowing the pH level of a cow’s milk allows the farmhands to get the best milk possible by milking the cows at precisely the right moment.

Kemble Farms was presented with the award for Progressive Farmer of the Year at the Food and Farming Industry Awards by television presenter Jeremy Vine at a ceremony at the House of Commons in December.

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