Weekly podcast: Health Commissioner on glyphosate, Glanbia vote and Vietnam
In the Irish Farmers Journal podcast this week we interview the EU Health Commissioner on glyphosate, document the Glanbia vote reaction, see how Irish dairy is doing in Vietnam and visit Ballymaloe.

Listen to “Weekly podcast: Health Commissioner on glyphosate, Glanbia vote and Vietnam” on Spreaker.

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Thomas Hubert quizzed the EU Commissioner for Health Vytenis Andriukaitis on glyphosate when he visited Dublin this week.

Listen to “EU Commissioner for Health on Brazil and glyphosate” on Spreaker.

Glanbia Co-op board member Brendan Hayes and Glanbia group managing director Siobhan Talbot speak with Irish Farmers Journal news correspondent Odile Evans after the endorsement of the proposed Glanbia Ireland joint venture by co-op shareholders.

Listen to “Reactions to Glanbia Ireland vote” on Spreaker.

Pat O’Toole interviews Jim Bergin, the man getting ready to manage the new Glanbia Ireland structure.

Listen to “GII chief executive Jim Bergin” on Spreaker.

Teagasc organised a conference on farmers’ health this Tuesday where researchers said farmers have poorer health than their active lifestyle would suggest, especially in terms of heart disease. There, Thomas Hubert met Professor Susan Brumby of Australia’s National Centre for Farmer Health. She said many problems were similar in our two countries.

Listen to “Australian farmer health specialist Susan Brumby” on Spreaker.

This week, the BETTER Farm programme took Ciarán Lenehan to a Co Offaly farm which finishes cattle from its own sucklers, and from the dairy herd.

Listen to “Ciarán Lenehan speaks to BETTER farmer John Dunne” on Spreaker.

It is again peak season for visitors to show up unannounced at farms and offer painting or other jobs. Garda Sergeant Tom Dwyer, a rural crime prevention officer in Co Tipperary, told Irish Farmers Journal deputy news editor Caitriona Murphy that farmers should be aware of the risk of crime associated with bogus callers.

Listen to “Garda rural crime prevention officer Sgt Tom O'Dwyer” on Spreaker.

Aisling Hussey recently visited Vietnam with support from the Simon Cumbers Media Fund. She caught up with Nguyen Hieu Liem and Cong Huyen Ton My Lien of Anova, a Vietnamese company importing milk powder and UHT milk from Ireland. Aisling also met the head of the Irish Business Association in Vietnam, John Marron.

Listen to “Irish dairy in Vietnam” on Spreaker.

Cutting greenhouse gas emissions is the focus of current efforts against climate change, but what if farmers could help take existing CO2 out of the atmosphere? Trinity College Professor Mike Jones presents a new research project.

Listen to “Prof Mike Jones on negative greenhouse gas emissions” on Spreaker.

And in the Irish Country Living this week Ciara Leahy meets Cuilan Loughnane of the White Gypsy brewery at Ballymaloe Litfest.

Listen to “Craft brewer Cuilan Loughnane” on Spreaker.

Missed the previous episodes of the podcast? Catch up here: www.farmersjournal.ie/podcast

IFA to oppose farm loan sales at AIB meeting
Farmer representatives will highlight the sale of farmers' debts to vulture funds as the bank's shareholders gather this week.

IFA representatives will lobby AIB shareholders at the bank's annual in Dublin this Wednesday.

The IFA will "have a presence outside the AIB AGM in Dublin" a statement from the organisation reads.

It continues: "This is part of a planned campaign to be rolled out nationally against AIB’s plans to sell certain farmer loans as part of its most recent loan sale."

Earlier this month, the Irish Farmers Journal revealed that around 100 farm loans were included in AIB's planned sale of debts to an affiliate of US-based vulture fund Cerberus.

While not a call for a farmers' protest, the small-scale lobbying is likely to be repeated around the country in the coming weeks, an IFA spokesperson told the Irish Farmers Journal.

AIB is 71% owned by the Irish Government.

Read more

Banks in last-chance saloon with public

Up to 100 farms in AIB loan sale

Exclusive: Rabobank sells 1,800 farm loans

Queally brothers firm falls foul of EPA
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published the latest National Priority Sites list, with five businesses not meeting the necessary environmental standards.

Five sites are on the latest list for failing to meet the necessary environmental standards set out by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA).

One of the companies, food processor Arrow Group, is owned by the Queally brothers, who also own Dawn Meats.

Arrow Group previously appeared on the environment watchlist in January this year.

All the companies on the list face further enforcement action from the EPA to secure compliance.

The five sites represent less than 1% of industrial sites licensed by the EPA, but account for 21% of complaints received.

Three sites are new to the list, while Glanbia Food Ireland Ltd and Rosderra Irish Meats have been removed from the list that was published in January.

The five companies included are:

  • Arrow Group, Kildare – noise and odour complaints.

  • Euroflex Teoranta, Donegal – emissions to air and waste management.

  • Western Brand Group Ltd, Mayo – wastewater management.

  • East Cork Landfill Site, Cork – landfill gas and leachate management.

  • Arran Chemical Company Ltd, Roscommon – emissions to air and groundwater.


Licensed facilities are identified as national priority sites for enforcement using a system developed by the EPA.

Points are allocated to each site based on compliance data such as complaints, incidents and non-compliances over the previous six months.

Sites which exceed a certain threshold become a national priority site and are targeted by the EPA for further enforcement action.

The farmer's daily wrap: lamb prices, milk production and Donegal wildfire
Here is your news round-up of the top five farming stories today, Monday 22 April.

Weather forecast

Tuesday morning will feature scattered heavy showers but it will be mainly dry for the afternoon/evening.

Met Éireann is forecasting hazy sunshine and another warm day, with top temperatures of 17°C to 21°C in light to moderate southeast breezes.

In the news

  • The Air Corps is to join fire brigades battling a Co Donegal gorse fire that began in the early hours of Monday.
  • Milk production in both New Zealand and the Netherlands has been tightening significantly in the first quarter of 2019.
  • The timing of two religious festivals, Easter and Ramadan, could bode well for lamb prices for the next five years.
  • The Department of Agriculture will host Basic Payment Scheme clinics in Offaly, Tipperary, Westmeath and Monaghn this week.
  • Watch potato, grain and beef farmer Mark McGurdy sow cereals through the night in Co Antrim.
  • - Coming up tomorrow, 23 April 2019:

  • Leitrim suckler farmer Karen McCabe on the never-ending battle with rushes, a weak calf and an unexpected win in the show ring.
  • The latest update from the BETTER farm beef programme from Matthew Halpin.
  • A look at what's happening on the international grain markets from Stephen Robb.