Family farm incomes rose by an estimated 7% in 2019, according to the Teagasc Outlook 2020.

Good weather in comparison to 2018 meant that farmers spent less overall on animal feed, fertiliser and silage, helping to increase incomes.

However, there was still a huge divide between sectors and their average incomes.

Incomes increased on dairy farms this year, thanks to lower production costs and an in increase in milk production.

Pig feed prices are set to rise slightly in 2020


Teagasc said that incomes also rose on beef farms this year, due to the exceptional aid measure introduced by the Government, along with lower spending on inputs.

Unfortunately the news was not as good for tillage farmers, who saw their incomes drop sharply due to poor cereal prices.

“The increase in fertiliser, and cattle and sheep feed prices in 2019, is set to reverse in 2020, leading to a slight drop in production costs across grassland and tillage farms,” the Teagasc report states.

“Cattle and cereal prices are forecast to improve slightly, while milk and lamb prices are likely to remain relatively stable for the year as a whole.

“While pig feed prices are set to rise slightly in 2020, this will be more than offset by a substantial increase in pig prices, due to the continued fallout from African swine fever in Asia."

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