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Suckler numbers will drop by 2025

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Tommy Freaney, Derrydonnell and Christy Conneely, Menlough, are all smiles as they view the 'Galways' at their Annual Show and Sale in Athenry.

A DECLINE in Irish suckler cow numbers between now and 2025 corresponding with an increase in the number of farms rearing and finishing calves from the dairy herd, is one of the key predictions in a Teagasc ‘Road Map’ for the next 10 years.

It also forecasts that the main pressures to come on the Irish beef sector over the next 10 years will be in the areas of international trade agreements and in the ongoing impact of the UK Brexit decision.

The Teagasc report points out that as things stand at present, 50% of Irish beef exports go to the UK. “Any increase in barriers to Irish beef exports [to UK] or increased access to the UK market by non-EU suppliers will negatively affect Irish cattle prices,” the advisor body predicts.

Looking ahead, Teagasc’s ‘overall vision’ for the beef sector is to increase the number of beef farmers who are making a sustainable and worthwhile profit per hectare in return for the resources that they are investing in their farms.

“This will be achieved through a greater uptake of technologies in grassland, animal breeding, nutrition, animal health and overall financial management.

“These factors have been shown at both research and demonstration farm level to deliver a significantly higher return per hectare than is currently being achieved on many beef farms,” Teagasc state.

Some of the other noteworthy points to emerge in the Teagasc report as they look ahead to the next 10 years are:

■ Ireland exports 90% of its beef and is the fifth largest exporter of beef in the world.

■ Suckler cow numbers are likely to decline between now and 2025 – also a small reduction in beef cattle farms.

■ An increase in the number of farms rearing and finishing calves from the dairy herd.

■ The most efficient suckler calf-to-steer beef producers finishing males as steers can expect margins of €1,300 per ha. By 2025.

■ Greenhouse gas emissions will reduce due to the decline in suckler cow numbers – compliance with the Nitrates Directive should not be a problem.

■ A strong focus to be maintained on advice, research and knowledge groups.

■ Higher levels of grass produced beef to be achieved with better soil fertility and grazing systems.

■ The EU is currently 98% self-sufficient in beef production – demand is expected to stay ahead of production over the coming years.

*The Suckler Beef ‘Road Map’ is compiled under the direction of Pearse Kelly and Dr. Edward O’Riordan. See Teagasc sheep prospects on page 74 and dairy on page 76.

Connacht Tribune

TDs to be lobbied under the skies at Corofin

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Galway IFA Chair, Stephen Canavan

GALWAY IFA are planning an unusual lobbying session of local politicians early next week . . . under open skies rather than behind closed doors.

TDs, senators and councillors have been invited to the outdoor canvas of the politicians on the farm of Galway IFA Chair, Stephen Canavan, at Ardskeaghbeg, Ballyglunin, on Monday evening next at 7pm.

IFA hope to have a number of stands at the gathering to highlight the rocketing cost of farm inputs over the past year such as fertiliser, fuel and feed.

“We really are trying to highlight the financial pressure that many farmers are under, and we are pushing hard for a subsidy on fertiliser purchase.

“Last year, the money from the sale of two lambs would buy a tonne of nitrogen – now it takes seven lambs to make that same purchase. There is a compelling case for a fertiliser subsidy to be introduced,” said Stephen Canavan.

He added that IFA in Galway were pushing for a number of measures to be put in place which would target the farmers most in need of assistance.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Fertiliser stocks are not moving from suppliers

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Henry Walsh: Fertiliser is just not moving!

FERTILISER just ain’t moving from the pallets of the merchants and co-ops – that’s the message this week from a Galway IFA Environment Rep and dairy farmer.

Henry Walsh from Oranmore told the Farming Tribune that the drystock sector had pulled back massively in terms of the quantity of fertiliser they had purchased this Spring.

“The one worrying aspect of this, is that now is the time of the year to get fertiliser on the land when the growing season is at its peak – early Summer is the time when the maximum grass return can be got, but definitely there has been a major cutback on sales,” said Henry Walsh.

He said that farmers had held back on the purchase of fertiliser due to the price, but he added that there was ‘very little indication of any reductions coming our way’.

“The stocks that are lying around in the yards of the co-ops and farm suppliers were purchased at a high price so there seem little chance of any price reduction coming our way over the Summer,” said Henry Walsh.

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

Connemara project aims to help farmers live a healthier and safer life on the land

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Head Gardener, Anja Gohlike of Kylemore Abbey Victorian Gardens, (on left), giving a talk on horticulture to a young and enthusiastic class during the Farming for Youth project. Pictured are, back left to right: Jamie Linnane, Finlay Carry, James Canavan, Malachy Gorham, Ivan McLoughlin, Jack O’Neill. Front: Branwen O’Halloran, Cian Conneely, Keenan McCallion, Tom Burke, Diarmuid Joyce, Evan Burke, Tiernan Lee, Ronan Mannion and Caithlin Salmon.

FORUM Connemara – the company designed to promote the region across a number of platforms – have now launched an initiative aimed at improving health and safety for farmers working in the region.

The overall aim of the EIP scheme (European Innovation Partnership) is to try and make farming a safer occupation for all those involved in working the land.

Despite Ireland’s reputation for producing high-quality food by farmers enjoying a great way of life, the sector continues to have a poor occupational safety and health record with a disproportionate level of fatal and serious injuries each year.

Fatalities in the farming sector account for up to 50% of all workplace deaths in Ireland and now FORUM Connemara are involved in an initiative aimed at improving the physical and mental health and their family members across North-West Connemara.

This currently involves 45 local farmers on a specially tailored farming training programme which will include first aid, working at heights, fire safety and quad-bike safety initiatives.

The FORUM Connemara team are currently focusing on completing Farm Risk assessments and safety plans and aim to complete 120 of these with farmers throughout Connemara.

Each farmer that successfully completes a risk assessment and is actively taking actions to address the risks identified will receive a farm safety pack worth €100 as an incentive to put ‘safety first’ on their farms.

The scheme will also host a series of talks that are relevant to the farming community on other issues including one over recent weeks given by Rory Coll, Coll and Co – The Tax Specialists on: Financial Matters for the Farming Community

FORUM Have been running the very successful North Connemara Locally Led Agri-environmental scheme (NCLLAES) since 2019 in North West Connemara.

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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