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Egerton wins UGS Grassland Farmer of the Year
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Egerton wins UGS Grassland Farmer of the Year

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Co Fermanagh beef and sheep farmer John Egerton has won the competition organised by the Ulster Grassland Society (UGS).
Co Fermanagh beef and sheep farmer John Egerton has won the competition organised by the Ulster Grassland Society (UGS).

John Egerton, who contributes to the Irish Farmers Journal’s “farmer writes” column, was declared Grassland Farmer of the Year at the UGS’s annual conference in Mallusk, Co Antrim, this Tuesday.

The competition singles out a farmer with excellent or unique grassland management practices and an ability to compare their performance with others and share their experience.

UGS judges visit competing farms twice to identify the most efficient grassland farming in relation to the natural resources of the farm, irrespective of the farming system. They examine grass management and utilisation, silage utilisation and winter feeding arrangements, and environmental practice.

Prizes sponsored by Danske Bank total £1,000, including £500 for the winner.

Upon joining the AFBI’s GrassCheck programme last summer, John wrote in the Irish Farmers Journal: “We are all caught up in Brexit and what’s going to happen with subsidies. I think that if we look under our feet we are probably wasting more money (by poor grassland management) than we will lose as a result of the changes that lie ahead.”

John Egerton from Rosslea (second from right) being presented the 2018 UGS Farmer of the Year award by last year’s winner, society president John Milligan from Castlewellan. Front row, from left, UGS competition secretary Stephen Morrison and sponsor Rodney Brown, Danske Bank. Other prizewinners included from left, back row: Mark Johnstone, Ahoghill; John Pickin, Hillsborough; Leslie Beggs, Omagh; Reggie Lilburn, Dromore; Paul Turley, Downpatrick; and Philip Truesdale, Banbridge.

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