What is #FARM24 all about?

24 Hours in Farming is the agricultural industry’s biggest online event with an audience reach of more than 112 million. The annual event aims to showcase the brilliant work done by British land and livestock farmers all day, every day to produce the food we eat and drink. Dalton Tags support’s 24 Hours in farming #FARM24.


Vicki Welch, Manger at Dalton Tags says: ‘It’s so important that we are apart of #FARM24 to showcase and support what brilliant work our customers do 365 days a year. The Dalton Tags team and I are proud to be a part of this day supporting the best of British farming showing the care and vast effort which goes into producing the food and drink we consume and countryside we have all enjoyed, especially in the last 18 months’

Customer Feature– The Damble Herd


Lianne is a third generation beef and sheep farmer based in Staffordshire. She had a lifelong dream to own a pedigree herd of cattle but was unsure which breed to invest in. After months of research she decided to invest in South Devon Cattle. They have a very quiet temperament which makes them easy and safe to handle. The cattle are hardy, adaptable and have great beef conformation. The dams are excellent mothers with a lot of milk, so the calves grow very well and are great forage converters.

She now owns The Damble Herd of Pedigree South Devon Cattle and over the past 11 years have grown the herd to over 60 head of cattle. Majority are suckler cows with 2 stock bulls alongside breeding heifers and fattening steers. A couple of years ago they took on a tenancy of a small holding broadening her aspirations for the herd and increasing options available for meat production.

Meat Box Success

Previously, Lianne had sold her South Devon heifers and steers at around 10 months to a local livestock market but the fluctuating trade and competition against more commercial meat breeds made her reconsider their goals for the herd and wanted more recognition for the high quality meat they produce. Last year she decided to start selling beef boxes and they were a huge success. South Devon meat is full of flavour . Lianne said “I am proud to produce home grown grass fed meat that is raised to a very high welfare standard. The beef box sales and support I received was overwhelming. I realised a lot of customers were very focused on eating meat they knew where it had come from”.

As the beef boxes were a fantastic accomplishment, she also started to sell home grown lamb and mutton boxes. Then during lockdown, last year, they invested in pigs to produce home reared pork which was a fantastic step.

In 2018, they started showing the cattle to help advertise the herd, highlight the great quality stock and promote the meat boxes. It all started by halter training a home bred Pedigree South Devon Bull which went onto winning Native Junior Bull Champion and Reserve Native Bull Champion in several shows. 2019 brought them even more rosettes, as they showed 2 heifers that went onto to win Native Heifer Champion at various shows. Lianne’s passion really shines thorough on the show circuit.

Lianne also said that “We take our bespoke Dalton Tag keyrings to each show to use as business cards and hand out to customers that have purchased a meat box from us. They have a logo and contact details on them, the tags are fantastic quality and very effective for our business. Instead of customers putting a business card in their pocket or leave on the kitchen side they can use the keying’s every day. Dalton Tags are a fantastic company to work with, they have such a wide variety of chose and were so helpful. I contacted them with the idea, and they made the rest happen with such friendly customer service.

What does #farm24 mean to you?

With 24 Hours in farming happening this week, we asked Lianne what it meant to her. She said that “#farm24 is a fantastic event to provide the nation with an insight as to how food is produced, and the huge variety of roles and responsibilities taken on by farmers as food producers and custodians of the countryside. Farming unfortunately can be misunderstood and receives a lot of scrutiny for all the wrong reasons. Regardless of people’s dietary preference, the nation needs farmers to put high-quality food on peoples plates. #farm24 is the perfect platform to promote all the hard work we as farmers put into the feeding the nation with healthy and affordable produce! It’s an opportunity for the nation to see how British farming plays a role in our day to day lives and to showcase our passion and commitment. So many people have enjoyed the countryside over the past challenging year and now it’s time to celebrate our incredible industry!”

How to get involved?

YOU can take part on any social media platform, although Twitter or Facebook are the most popular channels on the day.
Simply tag your post #Farm24 and include @FarmersGuardian , @Morrisons and @daltontags.

THIS year they are asking farmers to commit to taking part on the day by signing up on their website.

Download your free 24 Hours in Farming poster and either share with others on your farm or send a picture in


What is BVD?

What is BVD?

Do I have to test for BVD in England?

No, it is not compulsory in England and Wales to have animals tested for BVD. Compulsory eradication programmes have been running in Scotland and Northern Ireland since 2013.

Declan Rafferty, Co. Tyrone Northern Ireland, Suckler Farmer

“I believe that BVD testing has been very beneficial for my particular farming enterprise as it definitely helps with bloodlines and assists in keeping diseases controlled and eliminates the chances of unnecessary losses.

In my opinion, England would benefit from a BVD eradication programme. With England having the same market groups as ourselves, a BVD programme would be the best solution long term. Recent statistics have shown that here in Northern Ireland our BVD cases have decreased significantly highlighting that the eradication programme is definitely working and having a positive impact on the farming community. If not controlled, it could certainly have detrimental economic consequences. The scary reality is that just one infected calf could potentially result in a widespread epidemic within a very short space of time.

I have been purchasing the Countryside Service’s BVD tags for years, and I find it to be a very simple operation. The BVD sample is easily collected with no modification needed. Once the tissue sample is taken it is retained in the applicator, and ready for me to send on to the laboratory for testing.”



What do I gain from being BVD free?

Ever tightening margins for livestock producers mean productivity gains are a necessity. Taking steps to remove BVD often hidden within a herd rewards farmers with;

  • Higher milk yields
  • Improved calving indexes with improved herd fertility
  • Higher daily live-weight gain and a lower cull rate
  • Lower incidences of pneumonia and calf scours in young stock
  • Reduced lameness and mastitis in adult cattle
  • Better response and outcomes if treatment is administered
  • Healthier herds with higher immunity and less intervention requirements without the BVD virus suppressing the immune system

Financial returns are estimated to give a return of €10 for every €1 in the Republic of Ireland BVD programme (source; AHI).

Do Dalton Tags provide a tag and test service I can use on-farm?

Yes, ear tissue samples are easily collected for testing using the FLEXO Tissue Sample Tags, then sent for virus testing to our trusted labs which are National Milk Laboratories (NML), The Cattle Information Service (CIS) and SAC. You can send as few or as many samples as you require. Official FLEXO Test Tags are ideal for your new runs or replacements. They can be primary, secondary or management tags and are available in flags or buttons. Buying a tag and test package can save you both time and money.

What causes BVD?

The Bovine Viral Diarrhoea virus (BVDV) is the cause of BVD. Like all viruses, they are microscopic infectious organisms. In the case of BVD virus, it is suggested that 170,000 virus particles placed side by side would only cover a distance of 1cm. 1ml of blood from an infected animal may contain more than 1 million infectious viral particles. Infected animals secrete (or shed) vast amounts of virus.

What are the symptoms of BVD in older calves or in the days following calving?

Symptoms which may occur after birth and in older calves; include scours, calf pneumonia, and increased occurrence of other diseases, ill thrift or death. Commonly these calves do not respond to treatment as you would expect. Their immune systems have been suppressed due to possible exposure to the BVD virus from another carrier in the herd or other infection source and become Transiently Infected (TI).

What are infection sources of the BVD virus and how long can it stay active?

The BVD virus is highly infectious and can be spread by nose-to-nose contact, urine, faeces (including slurry) tears, saliva, clothing, equipment, buildings, trailers and, on occasion, semen and embryos. It can stay active out of body for up to four weeks. Sheep can act as ‘reservoirs’ and spread the disease but this is not fully understood. Little risk is thought to exist from wild ruminants but infection has occurred in goats and wild deer. Biting flies are thought to spread infection also.

Can humans and other animals contract BVD?

There is no known health risk to humans from the BVD virus although we can spread it on infected clothing and equipment.

Which tags does Dalton Tags recommend for BVD Testing?

Dalton Tags recommend the FLEXO Tag & Test system. It is a practical and simple system to use and is completely tamperproof from farm to laboratory.  FLEXO Tissue Sample Tags identifies the sample by the unique individual 2D barcode number which is pre-printed on the sample tube. Tag & Test  can be purchased from Dalton Tags with or without the test. Dalton Tags recommends CIS (Cattle Information Society) Labs for testing. Dalton Tags are extremely confident the FLEXO system is the best available. Please ring: 01636 700990, visit our websitewww.daltontags.co.ukor email sales@daltontags.co.uk for further information.

Does my vet need to attend?

You can test for BVD by yourself. FLEXO Tissue Test Tags are available direct from Dalton Tags or through your local merchant. They are quick, easy and accurate and the most cost effective way to test for BVD – remember you can have them with a test included.

What are the symptoms of BVD in adult cattle?

They can vary but include; fever, lethargy, loss of appetite, ocular discharge, nasal discharge oral lesions, diarrhoea decreasing milk production, coughing and poor fertility. Chronic infection may lead to signs of mucosal disease. This animal may have become infected from their mother whilst in the womb, from another animal or even the virus picked up from infected clothing, equipment or a building and can survive up to four weeks out of body.

What are the symptoms of BVD in newly born calves?

Calves can be stillborn or die soon after birth. They can suffer from wide stance, tremors, stumbling about with lack of coordination (Ataxia) and failure to suckle. This can indicate they have been infected from their mother and are what is known as Persistently Infected (PI) and they need to be isolated, retested, then culled and not sold on.

I do not seem to have a problem so why should I worry?

BVD can be the underlying cause of a range of issues in your herd that may on the surface not seem significant; more ‘empty’ cows than you should have indicating fertility problems, the odd ‘poor doer’ which never amounts to much, or scours or respiratory problems here and there –‘all part of livestock farming’ but which may be caused by BVD silently taking your time and profits.

What is Mucosal disease?

This is often triggered by BVD and animals affected often have scours often containing blood, a high temperature and mucosal lesions in the mouth, as well as ulcerations at the muzzle, the nose, the rim of the hoof. It often leads to death of the animal.

Read more

A tag order like never bear-fore …

In June 2021, we were approached by 1300KOALAZ to produce an ear tag for Koala’s being re-released back into the wild.

1300KOALAZ are the largest group of experienced and dedicated Volunteer Koala Carers and Rescuers in South Australia. Their mantra is “Rescue, Rehabilitate and Release”.

Adelaide and Hills Koala Rescue is a not-for-profit organisation, volunteer-run koala wildlife rescue organisation.

They started our operation in August of 2019. Their volunteers are the most experienced Koala carers in South Australia with over 10 years of industry experience with native wildlife.

They also use experienced koala vets and have SAVEM (South Australia Veterinary Emergency Management) trained individuals.

Koala Facts

Koalas are a well-known species not only in Australia but all around the world. These cue animals also have a scientific name, Phascolarctos cinereus, which is derived from the Greek word ‘phaskolos’ (“pouch”), as well as “arktos”, which means “bear”.

The word “cinereus” is Latin and translates to “ash-coloured” or “ashy” – referring to the colour of fur that koalas had when they were first encountered around Sydney by Europeans.

You may even occasionally hear koalas referred to as “drop bears”, a fictional name given to them that stemmed from Australian folklore. (This imaginary animal, described as a carnivorous predatory version of a koala, is usually used to scare tourists.)

The koala population has greatly varied historically. During 2016, there were approximately 300,000 koalas in Australia.

However, in 2019, it was estimated by the Australian Koala Foundation that there were less than 80,000 remaining in the country.

Some sources state that this number may even be as low as 43,000. At the moment, koalas are vulnerable to extinction, which is a step above being endangered.

Reports have indicated that between 350 and 1,000 koalas living in the northern part of New South Wales have died due to the recent terrible fires there. There are even some grim predictions that koalas may go extinct by the year 2050.

In saying so, there is definitely still a chance to save the koalas! The Koala Protection Act has been put in place by the Australian government to protect these unique Australian animals. This act has been put in place to ensure that koalas will receive the highest level of protection given to any animal species in Australia ever.


Sally from 1300KOALAZ said “We received the tags today and they are just great, thank you so much. Everyone absolutely loves them and they are just what we need. I thank you for sorting this so promptly and professionally for us and Addie and Willow are being released tomorrow”




Are your lambs ready for the market? 

We have an exclusive offer on Sheep Tags for you to avail of.

Order 101 or more tags and receive 10 FREE Dalton Tags EID Slaughter Tags or order 201+ and receive 20 FREE Dalton Tags EID Slaughter Tags .

Additionally, you will receive FREE Loop Tag Applicator for first time orders over 200+.

Order now:

Why purchase Dalton Tags EID Loop Tag:

  • Extra Sharp Pin for Easy Ear Insertion
  • Lightweight & ideal from birth
  • EID Transponder completely sealed giving an accurate read from all angles.
  • One easy to use loop tag applicator

Offer valid until 30th September.

Bird 1

Not Just Livestock Tags … Bird Tags

Not Just Livestock Tags … Bird Tags

Here at Dalton Tags we love having something different from our normal bread and butter.

We were approached by a customer for a bespoke order to help with their breeding information of Cage and Avairy birds which they also show.

The tags are used to track breeding information and eliminates interfering with the nest boxes to see how they are getting on and allows them to carry on naturally.

Before the customer use to use bits of wood with paper on them to keep this information on but when they got wet you couldn’t read them.

“We are extremely happy with Dalton Tags as we can wash them and keep reusing them without worrying of them getting wet”



Innovation in Pig Tags

Are you experiencing hard to read ear tags?


You are not alone! Lots of farmers face this problem, especially those farming pigs in an outside setting. Challenging environments can make individual animal identification particularly difficult at times, with numbers often being misread and incorrectly recorded, resulting in increased cost to the farmer through additional administration and staff hours.


In 2020, Dalton Tags were approached by Andrew Maskery Associates with this exact problem – wanting to find a suitable and financially viable solution. Hearing this reoccurring problem from customers, the two companies wanted to take up the challenge. Combining the extensive experience of Dalton Tags in the UK animal identification market and Andrew Maskery Associates insights into the pig industry, they set out to design an effective solution for identifying pigs in an outdoor environment. It was not a simple solution; however, and a lot of work went into this new idea. To ensure it was legible from far away and in potentially dirty environments, many trials took place to find the best performing tag. The readability of the tag in a dirty and muddy environment was not the only challenge, as the tag also had to have an excellent retention rate and durability to withstand the demanding outdoor environment.


After extensive research and numerous field trials, the unique 3D pig tag was successfully designed. The tag has a proven 99% retention rate within the livestock sector. The plastic is made from durable plastic which provides high elasticity and tensile strength. The 3D tag is available in vast range of colours and can print up to 4 clear and easy to read digits. The tag can be matched with a large, medium, button or electronic to suit the keepers needs.Despite some complications during trials, the new tag with a 3D print was presented to Andrew Maskery Associates which received highly positive feedback from their customers who expressed praise for the product, emphasising that it would solve the ongoing problem of identifying pigs in both indoor and outdoor environments. The newly developed 3D tag can also be used for all types of management identification purposes with the tags being easier to read at substantially greater distances than other conventionally marked tags.

Farmer, Colin Stone, who was nominated for Farmers Weekly Pig Farmer of the Year 2020, stated he thought it was “the ultimate ear tag, standing out against all others”.

Vicki Welch, Manager of Dalton Tags also commented “this new design shows our commitment to the development of innovative solutions for animal identification that helps drive efficiency for farmers that cannot afford the time and costs associated with missing records and extra labour costs”.

The collaboration between Dalton Tags and Andrew Maskery Associates has provided a clean, bold 3D ear tag which is easy to read from a distance, regardless of mud or dirt. The innovative design has been recognised by farmers in the industry and is unique to Dalton Tags. Andrew Maskery said that “the new 3D tag development solves a troubling problem for our customers” and highlights that he is “looking forward to the continued partnership with Dalton Tags in launching the product across the UK into the pig industry”.

For further information about 3D tags, please contact Dalton Tags on 01636 700990 or by email sales@daltontags.co.uk and Andrew Maskery Associates on 01728 685235 or by emailing sales@andrewmaskery.co.uk



Exporting or moving GB livestock to the EU or Northern Ireland from 1 January 2021

How your livestock intended for EU export need to be identified from 2021

From 1 January 2021 the UK will trade with the EU as a third country.

New rules for entry into the EU of certain animals and products from third countries including livestock will apply in 2021. Under the Northern Ireland Protocol of the EU Withdrawal Agreement, the same requirements will apply for these live animal movements from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.

This means that we will have to use a two-letter ISO1 country code ‘GB’ to identify livestock exported to EU Member States or moved to Northern Ireland.

The UK currently uses the identifier ‘UK’ in accordance with EU rules for Member States. From 2021, we will need to include a visual identifier which displays GB for animals intended for exported or moved to the EU or moved to Northern Ireland.

The following paragraphs explain the export tagging options for different species and would also apply when tagging animals for movement to Northern Ireland.

This guidance can be found on GOV.UK here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/exporting-animals-and-animal-products-to-the-eu-from-1-january-2021

What do I need to do if I want to export or move livestock to the EU or Northern Ireland from 2021?

For sheep: their identification must now display the GB country code – the options for doing this vary as follows:

Where sheep are already double tagged
You should apply an additional (management) tag which displays GB and the animal’s existing individual ID number. This tag should not be red or yellow.

A replacement tag pair displaying the GB suffix can also be applied where animals not intended for export which have already been identified with a UK tag pair have lost one or both of those tags.

If the replacement pair is applied off the holding of birth that pair must be red tags.


Lambs identified with the single slaughter tag that are to be exported to the EU

You can apply a pair of UK tags (one of which must be electronic) which also display a GB suffix. These animals will not need an additional management tag given these tags contain the visual GB code.

For slaughter lambs because the new tags replace an existing identifier, they should both be red2 tags.
2 In GB red is a visual indicator that a sheep or a goat’s identification has changed after it left its birth holding.

For Goats: The same rules apply for goats going for export as apply to sheep.

For cattle: their identification must now display the GB country code – the options for doing this vary as follows.

Where cattle are already identified with a UK tag pair.
Cattle are currently double tagged with a pair of ear tags which bear the country code UK and the animal’s individual ID number. One of these tags is a secondary tag where additional information can be added.

You should apply an additional (management) tag which displays GB plus the animal’s existing individual ID number.
Replacement tags with the GB suffix can also be applied where animals which have already been registered and not intended for export have lost a secondary tag.

You can use any type of plastic tag (e.g. flag tag, button tag) for the additional management tag, but it should be easily read from a distance.

Where calves are to be identified for the first time

You can apply a pair of ‘UK’ tags which also display a GB suffix on the secondary tag. These animals will not need an additional management tag given these tags contain the visual GB code.

Cattle will no longer need to be accompanied by their passport on export to the EU. You will need to return the passports to BCMS within 7 days of export.

If you are exporting cattle for slaughter, they also need to be freeze-branded on the hind quarters with an L mark.

For pigs:

The identification must include the ‘GB’ code.

For export pigs are required to be identified with an ear tag or ear tattoo bearing the letters UK plus the animal’s herd mark and an individual number.

From 2021, for export or movement to the EU you can apply an ear tag or tattoo which reads UK followed by the animal’s herd mark, an individual number and a ‘GB’ suffix.

Where do I get these tags?

Your regular ear tag supplier will be able to provide these tags.

You must tell them that they are for animals intended for export or movement to the EU or Northern Ireland and you should explain whether you need these tags for previously identified animals, or for as yet unidentified animals.

Your supplier will print the tags and deliver them to you in the usual way.

You should record their application in your holding register (new ID or replacement ID sections – where required). The animal can then be moved for export as normal.

You should allow 3-6 days for your tag supplier to produce and deliver your tags.

What about exports and movements from Northern Ireland to the EU and GB?

Movements of livestock from Northern Ireland to Great Britain from 2021 can be identified the same way as they are now using a UK tag.

For exports from Northern Ireland to the EU, you will need to contact DAERA.

Dalton Design a Tag Competition

To download your entry form click here.

Dalton Tags Spring/Summer Newsletter 2020

To read the Spring/Summer version of our newsletter and keep up to date with Dalton Tags news click here.

A Flexo solution for local retailer

We were tasked by a local retailer to print some keyring tags that can be used by staff for accessing their point of sale system.


Previously they had used plastic credit cards but these were often lost and after a few weeks of use, the laminated layer would peel back and eventually the barcode images degraded so badly it rendered the cards useless.


The client had heard about our super strong Flexo Tags and was impressed by the non-fade laser marking technology we offer.


They opted for large Flexo Management Tags with a keyring and lanyard added.  The unique barcode was emailed to us and we were able to replicate it perfectly on the tag and also assign a visual user ID to each of the tags.


The uses for our tags seem truly endless!

If you have a problem… if no one else can help… and if you can find them (don’t worry contact details below!)… maybe you can hire DALTON TAGS!