Irish farming app wins big in Madrid
Irish company, FarmFlo, whose app eliminates paperwork for farmers and farm consultants, was announced as Ireland region winners of the 2016 European Satellite Navigation Competition on Wednesday.

FarmFlo Ltd was announced as Ireland region winners of the 2016 European Satellite Navigation Competition at the Satellite Masters Conference 2016 in Madrid on Wednesday night.

Farm Flo won for its easy-to-use app which is designed to plug into FarmFlo’s existing software to maximise efficiency for farmers by eliminating dreaded paperwork. The app also enables farmers to gather data on their mobile devices regardless of internet connectivity on the farm.

FarmFlo enables greatly improved record keeping for farm planning and compliance

The location specific data on the mobile device synches to update farm software once connectivity is restored.

The app provides the user with off-line ability to pinpoint exact areas using satellite technology and record related information such as growth records of crops, causes of crop stress and action plans for problem areas, to be updated once internet connectivity is restored via a mobile network or wi-fi connection.

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Welcoming the award, Dan O’Donoghue of FarmFlo Ltd said the product “enables greatly improved record keeping for farm planning and compliance, more efficient use of time along with much reduced stress for the typically self-employed, sole trader farmers and their professional advisers.”

Based in Donegal, FarmFlo launched in 2015 and their technology is already being utilised by many farmers and advisors across Ireland and the UK, covering hundreds of thousands of farming acres.

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Arrabawn holds December milk price
The processor is the most recent to announce that its milk price will be unchanged.

Arrabawn has decided to hold its price for December milk at 30.6c/l excluding VAT.

The price has remained unchanged for several months.

Most co-ops opted to leave milk prices unchanged for December.

Dairygold

Dairygold announced that it will hold their December milk price at 30.36c/l excluding VAT.

The price is inclusive of a 0.5c/l quality bonus based on standard constituents of 3.3% protein and 3.6% butterfat.

The co-op has also held this price for several months.

Lakeland Dairies, Glanbia and Kerry Group held their price at 30.4c/l (excluding VAT) for December milk supplies.

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Dairygold holds December milk price

Aurivo and Carbery set milk prices for December

The farmer's daily wrap: low-cost loans and BDGP map
Check out the latest headlines and get a look ahead at tomorrow's weather forecast.

Weather forecast

A status yellow nationwide snow and ice warning is in place from 7pm Monday 21 January until 9pm the following day.

According to Met Éireann, hill and mountain areas are expected to be the worst affected.

Frost and ice are predicted and temperatures will dip to -1°C, with fresh winds.

In the news

  • Minister Creed has said some 2,511 farmers are yet to pass the approval process for their BDGP payment.
  • Vets have criticised the Department’s level of action in the run-up to Brexit.
  • Grant funding of up to €25,000 is available to farmers participating in GLAS to restore traditional farm buildings and structures.
  • Farmers will have to draw down a minimum of €50,000 to access the next low-cost loan scheme.
  • Social Farming is set to double the number of its farmer participants from 60 to 120, according to its annual report.
    Minimum €50,000 draw-down for low-cost loans
    Farmers will have to draw down a minimum of €50,000 to access the next low-cost loan scheme.

    The Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) has confirmed details of the Future Growth Loan Scheme, including that farmers will have to apply for a minimum of €50,000 to avail of the scheme.

    The long-awaited low-cost loan scheme will offer eligible businesses and farmers loans at an interest rate of 4.5% or less.

    The maximum draw down is €3m and the loans are for terms of between eight and 10 years.

    Banks have been invited to apply to distribute the new low-cost loan scheme, with Bank of Ireland, AIB and Ulster Bank all having previously expressed interest in taking part in the scheme.

    Loans in March

    Up to €300m is available under the scheme, which is being developed in conjunction with the SBCI, the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Business.

    Minister for Business Heather Humphreys previously told the Irish Farmers Journal that she hopes to see the loan scheme fully operational by March this year.

    Financial institutions have until 11 February to submit their applications to become lending partners.

    Previous scheme

    Under the previous low-cost loan scheme, the interest rate was set at 2.95%, with loan terms available between 18 months and three years.

    A total fund of €150m was available, with roughly €145m drawn down by farmers. By October last year, some €47.5m had been repaid.

    Read more

    Listen: low-cost loans to land in March

    Where is the low-interest loan fund?