Dairy farmers are the latest beneficiaries in a string of free PC deals to hit the UK over the last few months.
Livestock information service provider NMR has teamed up with PC manufacturer Gateway to offer the free PCs, which will be equipped with Intel's latest Pentium III processor, Windows 98 and free Internet access. Also included are a keyboard, monitor, mouse, modem and free support.
As with other so called free PC deals, there is a catch. The farmers must sign up for a three year contract to use NMR's farm management software to qualify for the deal, but the company said this will cost them £35 a month, which is less expensive than signing up for the software in the usual way.
Robin Turner, NMR chief executive commented: "Producers are being squeezed from every direction in an unprecedented way. Farming incomes have fallen dramatically and the demands for more administration and paperwork is increasing relentlessly."
He added: "NMR cannot directly influence milk or livestock prices, but we can support dairy farmers by giving them the technology that allows more efficient operation of their businesses and reduces the burden of record duplication and paperwork."
He said that through the offer, farmers will be able to run herd and farm business management programs and through the free Internet connection will have access to market information and be able to compare prices and buy products from commercial Web sites.
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