The Royal Jersey Agricultural & Horticultural Society
The RJA&HS was formed in 1833 and was first granted Royal patronage in 1834 by King William IV. Her Majesty The Queen granted her patronage in 1952 and opened the Society’s new showground in Jersey in 2001.
The Society comprises of two departments. An Agricultural Department which represents the farming industry in Jersey, stages agricultural shows, provides a range of services to support the modern dairy industry and is responsible for the management of the ‘Jersey’ breed of dairy cow in the Island.
The Horticultural Department promotes amenity horticulture through shows and competitions, demonstrations and general advice as well as the provision of space for gardeners.
The Royal family have had a long association with the Jersey breed and on a number of occasions, when visiting the Island, the reigning monarch has been presented with a specially selected Jersey cow to join the Jersey herd at Windsor.
In 2016 the Society celebrates the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the Jersey Herd Book. This was the first stud register for the Jersey breed and in which is recorded information relating to the bovine population, including the owner, a description of the animal, its ancestry, date of birth, production and conformation. This is used to assess the breeding value of individuals so that the farmers can improve their stock, and therefore, the general condition of the breed.
The ‘Jersey’ can now be found grazing fields in over 100 countries around the world and with an estimated worldwide population in excess of 2 million head, is now the second most numerous breed of dairy cow and an important influence in the global dairy industry.