Farm Profit Programme: focus group open day
The Farmers Journal/ANM Group Farm Profit Programme will open its doors for anyone interested in joining a focus group on Wednesday 13 December at 3pm in Thainstone mart.

The project, supported by the Scottish Government has established a number of focus groups throughout the north and northeast of the country. However, there are still some places available for people who have yet to sign up.

The objective of each of the focus groups is to get 12 – 15 like minded farmers together to discuss their farm businesses, share experiences and improve overall technical efficiency – leading to increased farm profitability.

The groups, which will meet four times per year, will be self-driven and create the agenda and topics to be explored and discussed.

The open day will showcase a sample of some of the topics that the groups will cover. There’s a great line up of practical, hands-on demonstrations on:

How to accurately body condition score (BCS) cows.

Feeding to BCS and the cost saving this can have over the winter period.

SAC Vet Lab will be in attendance to discuss some of the most common causes of death in cases submitted for post mortem.

Ewe nutrition pre-lambing – getting the basics right to maximise lamb output.

Three targets to hit to improve your bottom line!

If you are not already in a focus group come along and see what is involved. The event takes plavce on Wednesday 13 December at Thainstone Mart at 3pm.

To register your interest or find out more, please send your details to FarmProfit@anmgroup.co.uk or call 01467 623866.

Limousin bull takes interbreed on first show outing
Despite wetter than anticipated conditions and a number of sporting event clashes, yesterday’s Oldcastle Show drew good crowds of both animals and spectators.

The much-needed rain appeared a day early for organisers of the Oldcastle Show in Meath with showers throughout the day, however his wasn’t enough to dampen the spirit of both spectators and exhibitors. This was particularly evident for Limousin breeder Karl Connell, who exhibited the Limousin and interbreed champion with Carrickmore Maximus. This was the September-2017 born bulls first show outing and what a way to start. Sired by Ampertaine Foreman, Maximus is an ET calf out of 2016 National and World Limousin Congress champion Baileys Ice Princess.

In the reserve interbreed position was the Angus champion Liss Minree M415. Bred by local breeder John McEnroe, this four-year-old cow was also champion in Mullingar last week. Sired by former stock bull The Moss Ethelorance, Minree was shown alongside her born calf.

Hereford

Christine Long came out trumps in the Hereford section with her three-year-old cow Allowdale Prettymade 557. This cow was purchased from former society president Liam Philpot a number of years ago and is sired by his then-stock bull Border Rory. Gary McKiernan took up the reserve spot with his young heifer Corlismore Poll 1 Sydney. Sired by Cill Cormaic Leo, this was also a show debut for Sydney.

Charolais

Gallaway Nice Boy took pole position in the Charolais section under judge Cathal Duignan. Born on 4 November 2017, this one is out of old reliable Doonally New and homebred dam Gallaway Freedom. Bred and exhibited by Michael and Paul McKiernan, this marked a good day for the outfit who also picked up the reserve Limousin championship with Gallaway Monika. Monika is sired by Ballinloan Jaegerbomb and was reserve interbreed champion last week at Mullingar show.

Simmental

Tisaran Her Majesty, last week's interbreed champion at Mullingar Show was again in winning ways in the Simmental ring securing overall champion. This rising two-year-old heifer is sired by Curaheen Wakeman and was exhibited by Martin Mooney. Nigel Hogan picked up the reserve sash for his December-born bull Rathnashan Jasper. This stylish calf is sired by Darwin, while the dam is Seaford Beverly.

Commercial

Two all-Ireland commercial classes were held at the show with Northern judge Nigel Matchett looking after proceedings. Leading the senior heifer championship was the McCloskey family with their Ross Alo sired Belgian Blue heifer. This stylish blue and white heifer had already secured three championship wins from her last three shows. In the junior all-Ireland class the McPadden family were out in front. Their March-born Elite Forever Brill heifer calf ticked all the boxes on the day. This young heifer is no stranger to the show ring having placed first and reserve champion at last month’s Athlone Show.

Irish Hereford breed society appoints new president
The Irish Hereford Breed Society has appointed its new president for the 1 July 2018 to 1 July 2019 period.

Elected to the position is Tipperary native Martin Murphy who runs the Toureenbrien herd in Lackamore, Newport. He takes over from outgoing president Pat McCarthy, who was in charge for the previous 12 months.

Murphy is the first member of the society to have been elected to the office of president for a second term. He previously held the role back in 2001 and this time brings with him an additional 15 years of Hereford Council experience, including three years as chair, during which time he hosted the very successful European Hereford conference in 2005.

Martin has served as chair of his local Munster branch of the society on two occasions, serving a total of six years. He represented Irish Herefords at the European Hereford conference in Germany in 2002, which had been postponed from 2001 due to the then major foot-and-mouth disease outbreak.

Judging

As a member of the judging panel, he has judged at numerous society sales and summer shows around the country. Murphy is also a director of Irish Hereford Prime Ltd and was instrumental in setting up the very successful commercial Hereford cross autumn sale for weanlings and stores at Newport, Co Tipperary, which is now in its 11th year and growing year on year.

On his election, Martin said: “I am deeply honoured to have been elected as president of the Irish Hereford Breed Society for a second term. The start of the year was tougher than expected and can be largely attributed to the tough weather conditions and scarcity of fodder. However, things have improved greatly in recent weeks with a sharp increase in demand and prices for bulls to run with cows. I have no doubt that Herefords will be to the fore as one of the main breeds at the numerous upcoming summer shows around the country. I would encourage as many members as possible to participate in these events keeping the Hereford in view of the public at every opportunity. Like many breeders, I look forward to adding some of the new bloodlines arriving from Australia to my herd, which will undoubtedly improve our breeding lines. I‘d like to thank the team for their work in selecting the new sires for the breed improvement scheme. The chosen bulls are truly of outstanding quality.

Like many breeders, I look forward to adding some of the new bloodlines arriving from Australia to my herd, which will undoubtedly improve our breeding lines

“I’d also like to highlight the importance of good management and culling poor quality cattle in order to maintain the high standards associated with Hereford. These must be adhered to as the demand for Hereford beef is constantly growing. In order to meet these demands, we must produce good-quality cattle to remain competitive with other breeds and create an even more efficient product ensuring that cattle that will finish well with less feed in a reduced time period. I look forward to meeting as many members of the society as possible over the coming year and wish all of them every success in their endeavours.”