Teagasc launches bigger and better BEEF 2018
Teagasc will stage its flagship beef event for 2018 at Teagasc, Grange, Co Meath, on Tuesday 26 June from 9.30am to 5pm.

Beef 2018 was launched last week at Teagasc, Grange, Co Meath. The theme of this year's event is "€nhancing technologies". While sentiment in the sector is quite good at the moment with beef prices buoyant, there are a number of significant challenges to the sector around Brexit, CAP reforms and climate change. The challenge of achieving a profitable business while dealing with reduced support payments will also be discussed.

Listen to "Aidan Murray from Teagasc on BEEF 2018" on Spreaker

One of the new additions to this year's event is the infrastructure village which will demonstrate the design and management of a grazing system that will include roadway construction demos, fencing demos, water system demos and grazing demos. The four main technical stands on the day will cover "suckler calf to beef", "dairy calf to beef", "reproduction and health" and "high performance from pasture". Nine themed villages from education to the Teagasc/Irish Farmers Journal BETTER farm beef challenge will be positioned at the end of the technical stands so people can pick and choose what topics they want to discuss further with the Teagasc specialists.

Live demos

Demonstrations will take place during the day in all villages with a livestock demonstration taking place at the end of the villages. This demo will be coordinated by Teagasc, the Irish Farmers Journal and ICBF and will look at selecting replacement heifers and calving at two years old. These live demos will take place at 11.30am,12.30pm,1.30pm and 2.30pm. Well-known chef Kevin Dundon will give a cooking demonstration using beef recipes near the farmers' forum marquee.

Farmers' forum

A panel discussion will take place with three farmers and Phelim O Neill, markets specialist with the Irish Farmers Journal, chaired by well-known TV celebrity, Richard Curran from RTE.

Speaking at the launch of the open day in Teagasc Grange today, Professor Gerry Boyle, director of Teagasc, said: “The beef sector is among the most important Irish indigenous industries. Total production increased by 4.5% to 615,000t in 2017. Beef exports in 2017 were worth €2.5b, representing a 65% increase in value compared to 2010. BEEF 2018 will be a day not to be missed by anyone with an interest in the Irish beef industry.”

Two injured in under-age tractor driving incident
Police in Northern Ireland said two juveniles were injured in an incident with a tractor driven by a third one.

The PSNI's Cookstown unit said on its Facebook page that it joined two ambulances and paramedics at the scene in Coagh, Co Tyrone this Sunday.

"Two juveniles fell from a tractor being driven by a third juvenile," police said. "Both sustained injuries significant enough that they required transfer by ambulance to hospital. The tractor should not have been on the road and should not have been carrying passengers."

Officers have prepared a file for the Public Prosecution Service against the driver for "a range of offences," adding that the incident "could have been a lot worse".

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Repeat of forgotten farmers blunder may be avoided in new CAP
There may be a chance to support the so-called forgotten farmers who were excluded by the rules of young farmers' schemes in the past, Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed has indicated.

Fianna Fáil agriculture spokesperson Charlie McConalogue asked Minister Creed this week "his views on whether young farmers who are under 40 years of age but that have been farming for more than five years and that are not permitted to access measures currently under Common Agricultural Policy, CAP, including being able to apply for the national reserve and for top-up entitlements will be eligible in the new CAP".

It appears that there will be some member state discretion in configuring the necessary supports

His question was connected to a proposed rule allowing each European country to define what is a young farmer after 2020.

Minister Creed said that while increased support for young farmers in the proposed structure for the next CAP applies to trained "young farmers who have newly set up a holding for the first time" or become head of the farm for the first time, "it appears that there will be some member state discretion in configuring the necessary supports".

This could avoid a repeat of the anomaly that has seen around 2,000 farmers miss out on current schemes.

Consultation

On these and other questions relating to the CAP after 2020, the minster said he would open a new public consultation next month now that the European Commission has published its initial proposal. "Ultimately the shape of the regulations will be determined by engagement with the Commission, member states the European Parliament, but I am anxious that Irish citizens have an opportunity to have their voices heard in the process," Minister Creed said.

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