Beef farmers engage the least with professional advisers during strategic decision making on-farm, new research from Maynooth University has shown.

The researchers interviewed 27 farmers who had just made large investments, split equally between beef, dairy and tillage.

Assistant professor of accounting at Maynooth University School of Business Dr Michael Hayden said: “The purpose of the study was to explore the role of accountants and agricultural advisers in decision making and how this varied between farm types.”

The study concluded that dairy farmers engaged the most with professional advisers overall.


In terms of the involvement of accountants, there was similar engagement from both dairy and tillage farmers.

Accountants and agricultural advisers were found to be active on three levels across the farms.

Some farmers categorised the professionals as key advisers to their investments.

Other farmers sought advice from professionals, but retained full control of decision making.

A group of farmers did not receive any advice from professionals at any stage of their investment.