Dairygold and Teagasc launch new farm development programme
Dairygold Co-op is investing €1m into the new programme Together Towards 2021.

A new joint farm development programme between Dairygold Co-op and Teagasc was launched by the Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed on Friday.

It aims to provide Dairygold members up-to-date information to maximise profitability and sustainability at farm-level.

Labour efficiency

The programme runs to 2021 and follows on from the previous programme that saw over 8,500 people attend events held over the three-year period up to 2017.

The programme will focus specifically on labour efficiency, lean farm practices, biodiversity, water quality and herd health, with an increased collaboration with Munster AI.

A number of key performance indicators have been set out. These include:

  • Soil fertility improvements.
  • Grass utilisation.
  • EBI increase.
  • Carbon footprint reduction.
  • Milk solids increase.
  • Financial management improvements.
  • Milk quality scorecard gains.
  • “I’m hugely encouraged to see that this programme has taken a holistic approach to providing Dairygold members of all scale and development with the tools required to achieve efficiency and profitability in a sustainable manner,” Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said at the launch on the farm of John Keane, Macroom.

    Together Towards 2021 brings the total amount invested by the Dairygold in knowledge transfer events to €7m since its collaboration with Teagasc began in 1993, it said in a statement on Friday.

    Read more

    October milk cheques up €40m

    IFA to oppose farm loan sales at AIB meeting
    Farmer representatives will highlight the sale of farmers' debts to vulture funds as the bank's shareholders gather this week.

    IFA representatives will lobby AIB shareholders at the bank's annual in Dublin this Wednesday.

    The IFA will "have a presence outside the AIB AGM in Dublin" a statement from the organisation reads.

    It continues: "This is part of a planned campaign to be rolled out nationally against AIB’s plans to sell certain farmer loans as part of its most recent loan sale."

    Earlier this month, the Irish Farmers Journal revealed that around 100 farm loans were included in AIB's planned sale of debts to an affiliate of US-based vulture fund Cerberus.

    While not a call for a farmers' protest, the small-scale lobbying is likely to be repeated around the country in the coming weeks, an IFA spokesperson told the Irish Farmers Journal.

    AIB is 71% owned by the Irish Government.

    Read more

    Banks in last-chance saloon with public

    Up to 100 farms in AIB loan sale

    Exclusive: Rabobank sells 1,800 farm loans

    Queally brothers firm falls foul of EPA
    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published the latest National Priority Sites list, with five businesses not meeting the necessary environmental standards.

    Five sites are on the latest list for failing to meet the necessary environmental standards set out by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA).

    One of the companies, food processor Arrow Group, is owned by the Queally brothers, who also own Dawn Meats.

    Arrow Group previously appeared on the environment watchlist in January this year.

    All the companies on the list face further enforcement action from the EPA to secure compliance.

    The five sites represent less than 1% of industrial sites licensed by the EPA, but account for 21% of complaints received.

    Three sites are new to the list, while Glanbia Food Ireland Ltd and Rosderra Irish Meats have been removed from the list that was published in January.

    The five companies included are:

    • Arrow Group, Kildare – noise and odour complaints.

    • Euroflex Teoranta, Donegal – emissions to air and waste management.

    • Western Brand Group Ltd, Mayo – wastewater management.

    • East Cork Landfill Site, Cork – landfill gas and leachate management.

    • Arran Chemical Company Ltd, Roscommon – emissions to air and groundwater.

    Enforcement

    Licensed facilities are identified as national priority sites for enforcement using a system developed by the EPA.

    Points are allocated to each site based on compliance data such as complaints, incidents and non-compliances over the previous six months.

    Sites which exceed a certain threshold become a national priority site and are targeted by the EPA for further enforcement action.

    The farmer's daily wrap: lamb prices, milk production and Donegal wildfire
    Here is your news round-up of the top five farming stories today, Monday 22 April.

    Weather forecast

    Tuesday morning will feature scattered heavy showers but it will be mainly dry for the afternoon/evening.

    Met Éireann is forecasting hazy sunshine and another warm day, with top temperatures of 17°C to 21°C in light to moderate southeast breezes.

    In the news

  • The Air Corps is to join fire brigades battling a Co Donegal gorse fire that began in the early hours of Monday.
  • Milk production in both New Zealand and the Netherlands has been tightening significantly in the first quarter of 2019.
  • The timing of two religious festivals, Easter and Ramadan, could bode well for lamb prices for the next five years.
  • The Department of Agriculture will host Basic Payment Scheme clinics in Offaly, Tipperary, Westmeath and Monaghn this week.
  • Watch potato, grain and beef farmer Mark McGurdy sow cereals through the night in Co Antrim.
  • - Coming up tomorrow, 23 April 2019:

  • Leitrim suckler farmer Karen McCabe on the never-ending battle with rushes, a weak calf and an unexpected win in the show ring.
  • The latest update from the BETTER farm beef programme from Matthew Halpin.
  • A look at what's happening on the international grain markets from Stephen Robb.