The Irish Beef & Lamb Association (IBLA) has said it is disappointed but not surprised by some of Professor Gerry Boyle’s recent comments regarding the rearing of dairy beef by suckler farmers.

A statement by the IBLA stated: “Of particular note was Professor Gerry Boyle’s encouragement to suckler farmers to rear dairy beef calves.

“If we look back on the extensive reporting on the rearing of dairy beef, the overarching science and facts have repeatedly reported that rearing dairy beef is not sustainable or economically viable, in fact they suggest the contrary.

“The science and facts do not support his opinion.


“Irish farmers have been cautioned that some of these calves would require a payment of up to €200 going with them at acquisition in order to break even,” it said.

“The science and the associated studies, confirmed by the meat processing industry, tell us that these carcases from dairy beef do not hit the targets for this to be a viable enterprise,” it insisted.

The IBLA has said it would love to see the incoming head of Teagasc allow the beef researchers a "free hand" to generate a strategic plan to develop and grow the suckler beef industry.

“Our suckler beef is the cornerstone on which our beef industry was founded and most farming enterprises operate in the hope of making a profit,” added the IBLA.