“I would like to congratulate UCD and many of the most progressive dairy organisations in Ireland on this exciting strategic partnership that will create new opportunities, jobs and increase the value of Irish dairy exports,” said Coveney.
“UCD plays a critical role in the Irish agri-food sector and this project builds on a range of innovative programmes already in place.”
Irish dairy exports were valued at €3.24bn in 2015. By 2020, Irish milk production is expected to increase by 50% to over 7.5bn litres.
This partnership will enhance UCD’s capacity to investigate innovative models of milk production and provides an environment for teaching and research connected with dairy sciences. Some of the planned research includes genetics, nutrition, reproduction of dairy cows and herd health management.
The UCD dairy enterprise will have an increased capacity for 200 cows as a result of this investment. The herd will be comprised of spring-calving and autumn-calving groups and the research emphasis will initially be on maximising the potential for milk production from grass, while also investigating the economic potential for concentrate supplementation at different milk price levels.