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Farmers flat-out with their own ‘Gathering’ as the silage rolls in

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A FLAT-OUT week for hay and silage will be a major help in trying to build up the stocks of fodder on Galway farms for the coming Winter, according to Teagasc this week.

Teagasc – who are due to have the results of their comprehensive fodder survey released next week – said that exceptional growth over recent weeks, in addition to the extended spell of fine weather, had given a massive boost to the farming community.

Galway-Clare Teagasc Regional Manager, Brendan Heneghan, told the Farming Tribune, that while this Spring’s fodder clean-out had left nearly all supplies exhausted, a substantial amount of good quality hay and silage was now being got.

“What we all hoped for last January was an ‘early Spring’ and when we didn’t get that, it put the farming community under the most severe pressure.

“After that, next on our wish list was an extended dry spell during the early to mid-summer period and thankfully we’re getting that . . . and what a difference it has made to the whole outlook of farmers here in the West.

“The Winter and Spring gone by, presented one of the greatest ever challenges to the farming community but hopefully with the recent spell of good weather, we can now start to rebuild and replenish the fodder stocks across the board,” said Brendan Heneghan.

He also added that given the ‘run’ of successively wet years, soils – and particularly heavy soils – needed an extended fine spell to dry them out.

“A long hot Summer is the best drainage system that any farmer on softer lands could hope for. At last, fields that have been soggy for many months, are now drying out,” said Brendan Heneghan.

National IFA President, John Bryan, said that farmers around the country were making the most of the current fine weather and excellent grass growing conditions to replenish winter fodder stocks.

 “A good summer is critical to ensure that enough fodder is saved for next winter after the disastrous 12 months of difficult weather. Cereals, fruit and vegetable crops are also benefiting from the fine weather,” he added

 Mr Bryan said however that huge merchant debt had been incurred by farmers buying in expensive feed over the last 12 months and despite the improved weather conditions, cashflow remained very tight on many farms.

 The IFA President again called on the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to secure low interest EIB finance to help farmers pay down merchant debt and repair badly damaged cashflows.

 

 

Connacht Tribune

Flexibility and budget worries over direction of new scheme

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Michael Biggins: Disappointed at scheme.

THE new ACRES (Agri Climate Rural Environment Scheme) due to be rolled out on January 1 next is ‘restrictive and complicated’ according to West of Ireland farming representative.

IFA Rural Development Chairman, Michael Biggins, said that the proposed scheme was ‘far from a new REPS’ and urgently needed to be modified in terms of flexibility and budget allocation.

“As it’s currently proposed, ACRES is restrictive and complicated.  It will inflict more compliance costs on farmers, resulting in less income.

“The scheme is designed to discourage people from farming. In order to achieve the average payment, farmers will have to commit more land to lower levels of production compared to previous schemes,” said Michael Biggins.

He added that all farmers who applied needed to be accepted into the scheme while those farmers applying in 2023 would have to be paid in the same year.

Details of the €1.5 billion ACRES scheme were outlined by the Dept. of Agriculture in June with two entry streams – a general or individual one: and a co-operation model for environmentally sensitive area including Connemara and parts of South Galway and Mayo.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

‘Smart villages’: the way forward

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Pictured at the recent opening of the ‘Smart Villages’ office in Mountbellew were: Anne Kinsella, Chairperson of Galway Rural Development; Senator Aisling Dolan; and Minister for Rural Development and Social Protection, Heather Humphreys.

A RECENTLY opened Galway Rural Development (GRD) office in Mountbellew could be the forerunner to similar ‘Smart Villages’ initiatives over the coming years, according to the organisers of the scheme.

The Smart Villages initiative is part of the European Network for Rural Development, aimed at improving services in country areas such as health, social, energy, transport and retail.

The Mountbellew office was officially opened by Minister for Rural/Community Affairs  Heather Humphreys, who said that the initiative marked an important step forward in terms of rural development.

CEO of Galway Rural Development, Steve Dolan, said that last year they had picked out Mountbellew as their pilot location for the Smart Villages project which would offer a lot of opportunities for rural communities mainly through the use of information and communications technology

“Smart Village training has been developed and delivered, up-skilling many in the community in local development, connectivity, sustainability, and more. The opening of this office in Mountbellew is as a result of our shared efforts,” said Steve Dolan.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Anger as factories continue to chop lamb price

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Stephen Canavan: No reason for price cuts.

THE meat plants have been accused of trying ‘to make a fast buck’ on the backs of sheep farmers with lamb prices now back by a euro per kilo, as compared to just over a month ago.

Farm leaders have said that the factories are trying ‘to tough it out’ before more finished lambs begin to come on the market over the next month or so.

Galway IFA Chairman,  Stephen Canavan, told the Farming Tribune that there was no good reason for the chain of factory price cuts over the past five weeks or so.

“All the information we are getting is that the supply of finished lambs is still quite limited but the factories have obviously taken a decision to cut now, before the number of finished lambs increase through the Autumn.

“It’s just another example of the meat plants trying to make a fast buck at the expense of the primary producer at a time when input costs for farmers have never been as high,” said Stephen Canavan.

Lamb prices are this week hovering at the €6.50 per kg mark – down from a high of over €7.50 per kg in late June, equating to a price drop for farmers of around €20 per lamb.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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