LacPatrick suppliers Darren and Denise McKenna claimed the top prize at this year’s National Dairy Council/Ornua Quality Milk Awards. The husband and wife team milk 92 cows outside Emyvale, Co Monaghan, and faced stiff completion from eight other farms.

The award ceremony took place at the Clayton hotel in Dublin today (Wednesday) and aims to recognise Irish farmers producing top-quality milk as part of sustainable enterprises.

The McKennas, who are the fifth generation to farm the land, have a year-round system based on 62ha and milk in a 16-unit herringbone. The cows produce an average of 6,304l at 4.08% butterfat and 3.47% protein. The family also finished top of the healthy herd category.

The Ryan family from Tipperary took the runner up spot for 2018 and also claimed the award for data management.

Category winners

Also recognised were:

  • The McTiernan family from Longford for best winter milk.
  • The Downing family from Cork for best total bacteria count.
  • The O’Shaughnessy family from Limerick for sustainability.
  • The Keating family from Waterford for best somatic cell count.
  • The O’Donovan family from Cork for best protein production.
  • The Crowley family from Cork for development.
  • The Hayes-Furney partnership for business innovation.
  • For more on the awards see this week's Irish Farmers Journal.

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