Dairying in South West Derbyshire in the late nineteenth century : a study in historical geography

2013-11-27T12:32:19Z (GMT) by G.A. Tomson
The study analyses the changes in agriculture in S.W. Derbyshire during the period 1870-1900. Before 1870 the main product of the region was farmhouse cheese, but within thirty years this had become a rarity and the emphasis of sales had switched to liquid milk production, with London as the main market. The reasons for the decline of cheese production are investigated, as are the unsuccessful attempts to establish a factory system of production. The growth of the liquid milk industry is analysed in terms of ·the developing market and the price advantage over other forms of marketing. These changes are also related to changing farming systems within the region. Finally, an attempt is made to assess the relative profitability of farming in the region during the years of agricultural depression 1873-1896. Throughout the study consideration is given to micro-regional variations within the study area in an attempt to illustrate the influence of farm location and physical environment on farming systems. Extensive use is made of parish summaries of the Agricultural Returns to quantify these variations.