Westerwold demand 10 times higher this year
Drought conditions across the UK and Ireland have left a large winter feed deficit. As a result, DLF Seeds has seen a 10-fold increase in demand for Westerwold seed.

As farmers try to replenish the shortage of fodder, demand for Westworlds is at a record high in the UK. This is according to DLF Seeds, which is also predicting a similar demand in Ireland following the announcement of the Fodder Production Incentive by Minister Creed.

Stock can be grazing within eight to 10 weeks

As many farmers have used or failed to harvest some of their winter feed, there is a large deficit developing across the UK and Ireland. DLF says the demand for Westerwolds is driven by the need to fill this gap and because it is one of the most vigorous grass varieties on the market.

“Westerwolds is the most vigorous grass variety out there – once it's sown and has germinated, stock can be grazing within eight to 10 weeks,” explains David Rhodes, technical manager at DLF. “That compares with a wait of around 12 weeks with perennial ryegrass, so it’s unsurprising that demand has rocketed."


Outlining the performance of Westerwolds, he said it would yield 2-5t/ha in autumn. Those fields could then be closed for a cut of silage in spring, before sowing spring crops. This, Rhodes says, makes it capable of growing up to 20t DM/ha in its first year.

Ideally, the crop should be sown from August to early September. However, it can be drilled up to the second week in October once a maize crop has been harvested.

“You can plough and prepare as usual or simply harrow and roll it into a decent seedbed. Once it’s up and away, it becomes the perfect solution to the feed gap that farmers are experiencing,” Rhodes concluded.

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Fertiliser spreading recommences

The farmer's daily wrap: vet stand-off and counterfeit Landcruiser parts
Catch up with the headlines from the day and get a look ahead at tomorrow's weather.

Weather forecast

The west of the country will be affected by scattered showers overnight, according to Met Éireann.

Wednesday is expected to be a blustery, day with changeable rain conditions – ranging from scattered showers to hail throughout the day.

Atlantic coastal regions are expected to bear the brunt of the bad weather.

In the news

  • Gardaí recover fake Landcruiser parts worth €500,000.
  • Veterinary inspectors in factories are taking industrial action, which is having an effect on factory throughput.
  • IFA president Joe Healy has warned that there will be a knock-on effect if the national suckler herd contracts.
  • The High Court has placed a seven-week stay on a judgement ordering the detention of an indebted farmer resisting eviction from his land.
  • A number of dairy processors have set their milk price for November.
    LacPatrick holds milk price and adds winter bonus for NI suppliers
    LacPatrick has followed the lead of the majority of co-ops by holding its November milk price.

    LacPatrick Dairies has held its November milk price for suppliers both north and south of the border.

    Suppliers in the south will continue to receive 29.41c/l excluding VAT.

    Northern suppliers will receive 26.5p/l including VAT.

    They will also receive a 2p/l winter milk bonus for November milk.

    Last month, LacPatrick applied a cut of 1p/l to its October milk price for NI suppliers and said it was not in a position to pay a winter milk bonus.

    Read more

    Dairygold holds November milk price

    Gardaí recover fake Landcruiser parts worth €500,000
    Gardaí searched a premises in Monaghan as part of an investigation in counterfeit car parts.

    Gardaí have recovered up to €500,000 in counterfeit car parts, consisting mainly of Toyota Landcruiser parts, at a property in Drumgoose, Castleblaney, Co Monaghan.

    Jeep bullbars, tail lights, mud flaps and body panels, all bearing Toyota trademarked logos, were discovered by gardaí.

    The search was part of an operation investigating the importation and sale of counterfeit car parts.

    Gardaí added that no arrests were made as part of the search.

    Counterfeit Landcruiser parts.

    At the beginning of the month, gardaí recovered a large amount of stolen industrial plant, tools, trailers, vans, cars, engines and car parts with an initial estimate of up to €500,000 being recovered in Co Longford.

    Read more

    Gardaí recover €500,000 worth of stolen plant, tools and trailers

    Rural crime: ‘farmers require greater protection’