Peter and Natasha Clarke and their three children, Hollie, Eve and Andrew, farm in Dromineer, Co Tipperary, overlooking the beautiful Lough Derg. Peter is the fifth generation of Clarkes farming in Dromineer.
The youngest of seven, he took over from his father when he was just 21, after spending time in Gurteen Ag College.
At that time, it was a suckler beef enterprise and they converted to dairy in 2015, milking the first cow in the spring of 2016.
Cow numbers have increased to 132 in 2022 with a herd EBI of €197 and there is still a beef enterprise on the farm.
Peter is keen to adopt the latest technology to improve efficiencies. They invested in automatic calf feeders and cow collars in recent years and have seen benefits in calf health after introducing calf jackets.
The investment continues with a new calf shed built in this year. The Clarke farm is also an ASSAP pilot farm for Arrabawn and has undertaken a number of initiatives to improve water quality.
An automatic milking machine was installed, with hot water used every second day at a temperature of 95OC, using either Deosan CIP (700ml) detergent.
Deosan OSAN, which is used in cold water, is used every evening and is also used for cleaning and sterilising the bulk milk tank. Fresh cleaning products are used for every cleaning event.
With a young family, work-life balance is very important. They want to nurture the children’s interest in the farm but enjoy time off the farm as well.
The children are very active in sport and the family enjoy boating on Lough Derg as much as possible.