In Irish dairy farming we talk a huge amount about grass and cows. Managing finances too is becoming an increasingly important topic with expansion and milk price volatility. To set up a joint venture (leasing, partnership, share-farming) with a farm owner, you need to be excellent in these three areas but also have very strong people skills. This was the key message delivered by Pat Ryan and Noel McCall at the Irish Farm Managers Association (IFMA) Dairy Forum last week.

Both are award-winning farmers who have used joint ventures to grow their own dairy farming business. Making a joint venture work requires good people skills and being able to work effectively with others – something both Pat and Noel have done excellently throughout their farming careers.