A survey conducted by Bord Bia has revealed that 79% of farmers feel that more guidance is needed on how to improve their environmental sustainability.

With over 650 participants, the survey - ‘Farmer Sustainability and Engagement Tracking’ - showed a strong appetite among farmers to improve the environmental friendliness of their farms.

Nearly three-quarters of those surveyed believe that farmers should do more to improve their sustainability and 88% are confident in their ability to adopt sustainable farming practices.

Farm practices

The results show a reasonably high degree of adoption of sustainable practices, with 40% of farmers using water meters, 51% had soil tested in the last 12 months and 46% are using low emission slurry spreading.

The survey also captured the adoption of measures set out in the Teagasc MACC curve.

Nearly 60% of farmers surveyed are actively maximising the percentage of feed that is grass or pasture.

Over one third are undertaking silage quality and feed constituent assessments, with a further 41% stating that they are prepared to do so.

Two-thirds of dairy farmers are involved in a milk recording programme, recording at least four times a year, and over half are implementing a dairy EBI improvement plan.

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