1. Finding ways to cut costs

With current milk price 25c/l or 43% lower than this time last year and costs remaining stubbornly high, this session will look at ways farmers can improve margin. It will be chaired by Aidan Brennan with guests Sean Cummins, a dairy farmer from Co Kilkenny, Dr Joe Patton, head of dairy advisory with Teagasc and Liam Hennessy, agri-manager with FDC.

2. Dealing with nitrates

Dairy farmers Enda Duffy (high band) from Co Monaghan and Conor O’Leary (medium band) from Co Cork look at the impact of the reduction in stocking rate from 250kg N/ha to 220kg N/ha on their farms and what mitigation options they have. Laurence Shalloo from Teagasc will be on this panel also.

3 Actions for positive PR

Irish Country Living writer and dairy farmer Janine Kennedy chats to Zoe Kavanagh from NDC and dairy farmers Caroline Hanrahan and Shane Fitzgerald about what actions dairy farmers can take to protect the image of dairy farming and arm themselves with the facts on dairy.

4. Is AD an option?

With huge interest in renewable energy, the Irish Farmers Journal renewables editor Stephen Robb leads a discussion on the potentials and pitfalls of anaerobic digestion (AD) in rural Ireland with Maurice Deasy from Teagasc, David McDonnell from GreenGas AD and Declan Collins from the Irish Farmers Journal.

5. Co-ops at a crossroads

With uncertainty over the future direction of milk supply in Ireland, Jack Kennedy sits down with Declan O’Connor of Munster Technological University and TJ Flanagan to discuss the future of the processing sector in Ireland in terms of product mix and the impact on milk price.

6. Assessing investment decisions

Aidan Brennan sits down with Michael Murphy, agri-adviser with AIB and Philip O’Connor from ifac on how to assess different investment options on dairy farms in terms of return on investment and contribution to sustainability, profit and work-life balance.

7. Dairying in 2030

With so much regulatory change taking place, Jack Kennedy asks key industry leaders for their vision of dairy farming in Ireland by 2030. Mick Houlihan is senior manager for farm sustainability with Bord Bia and Laurence Shalloo is the head of dairy research at Teagasc.

8. Careers in dairy

Educational paths for new starters to dairy farming and the dairy industry is always an important topic. With changes to the way young people are being trained, we discuss the options and the issues with Emma Louise Coffey from Teagasc, Frank Buckley from UCC, Liam Hanrahan, chair of Macra agricultural affairs committee and Sarah McIntosh, careers editor with Irish Country Living.

9. What now for milk price?

With such an export-driven dairy sector, what happens internationally is critically important in Ireland. Jack Kennedy discusses the outlook with Bernard Condon, MD of global ingredients with Ornua and David Kennedy, head of dairy with Bord Bia.

10. Modern families; family farming in Ireland

Teagasc researcher Brendan Horan sits down with the Quigley family from Nenagh, Co Tipperary, and the Macnamara family from Limerick, winners of the NDC/Kerrygold Quality Milk Awards to discuss the trials and tribulations of combining family life with a busy dairy farm.

11. Dairy Dragons in the milking pit

New product innovations that can utilise technology, make farmers more efficient and more sustainable are always to be welcomed. This year’s Dairy Day will incorporate awards for new product innovations that are of benefit and value to Irish dairy farmers. See more on pages 8 and 9.

12. Teambuilding

The farmer is just one aspect of a successful farm team. Aidan Brennan will discuss how farmers can build a high-performing farm team around them, from employees to professional services such as accountants and advisers, to contractors and vets with Colin Donnery, CEO of FRS; Niall Murphy, dairy farmer, Missouri, US; and Paidi Kelly, dairy farmer and farm consultant.

There will be an opportunity for attendees at Dairy Day 2023 to meet the Irish Farmers Journal and industry experts to discuss specific queries farmers may have. This free and confidential, one-to-one clinic with an expert is available on a first-come, first-served basis during the allotted time. The schedule and topics are outlined in Table 1.

Of particular interest to farmers will be the changes to the nitrates derogation. Irish Farmers Journal dairy specialist Declan Collins will have a computer with him and can tell farmers if they are in the 250kg or 220kg N/ha zone for 2024.

Farmers should bring their Eircode to help identify their farm. Declan will also be using the Irish Farmers Journal nitrates calculator, so if someone has a query on nitrates they should have their average livestock numbers and number of eligible hectares.

Majella McCafferty is farmer advocacy manager with the National Dairy Council but is a former milk quality adviser, so is willing to give advice to farmers concerned about selective dry cow therapy.

Stephen Robb, Darren Carty, Siobhán Walsh and Martin Merrick will answer specific queries on solar panels, schemes, crops and TAMS, respectively.

PARKING: There is FREE PARKING available for all those attending Dairy Day 2023 in the Goulding Soil Nutrition site on Centre Park Road, Eircode: T12 D727 from 8am on Thursday 23 November.

A free and frequent shuttle bus is available to and from Pairc Ui Chaoimh. Entrance to the car park will be signposted from the City and Blackrock side. We ask all attendees to avail of this facility.

Please note, there is NO PARKING available in residential areas adjacent to Pairc Ui Chaoimh. Fines, clamping and towing will be in operation on the day for those who are not adhering to the parking guidelines. Garda controlled junctions and road closures will also be in operation in the vicinity of the venue.

Thank you for your cooperation. See you at Dairy Day 2023. Safe travels.