Our Organisation Search
Quick Links
Toggle: Topics

Contract Rearing of Replacement Heifers

Contract Rearing of Replacement Heifers

What is contract rearing? What makes contract rearing attractive to dairy farmers? What makes contract rearing attractive to rearers? What information is available? Get all the answers here and at our upcoming open days starting on 1st September at 11am in Golden Co. Tipperary

What is contract rearing?

Contract rearing involves the movement of replacement heifers from the owner’s farm for rearing on contract by another farmer.

Since the abolishment of milk quotas in 2015 milk production has increased significantly. This has put limitations on the availability of land around milking parlours, farmyard facilities and labour. Therefore an increasing number of dairy farmers will look engage other farmers to rear their replacement heifers for them. This will release land on the dairy farm for milk production, provide more facilities and labour.

What makes contract rearing attractive to dairy farmers?

In addition to releasing land for milk production:

  • It could free up labour to specialise more on dairying;
  • It would suit farms where accommodation is limiting;
  • It could suit farms where heifers are failing to achieve the performance levels required.

What makes contract rearing attractive to rearers?

  • It could provide a steady monthly cash flow;
  • The business risks associated with drystock production are reduced;
  • It is potentially more profitable;
  • The demands of buying and selling are diminished or eliminated.

What information is available?

Teagasc has prepared a number of documents to support parties interested in the contract rearing of replacement heifers.

Find out more about upcoming events

Contract Heifer Rearing Farm Walks

Should you consider Contract Heifer Rearing?

The Farm Walks will address the following:

  • Why consider Contract Heifer Rearing?
  • The requirements for a successful agreement.
  • Health issues and other key concerns
  • What are the costs?

Teagasc and DAFM staff along with the host farmers will address the audience.

See dates and venues below

Thursday, 1st September | 11am

Farm of Noel Farrell, Rathgallen, Golden, Co. Tipperary, Eircode: E25 F250

Thursday, 15th September | 11am

Farm of Lyle Buttimer, Gurrane, Fermoy, Co. Cork. Eircode: P61 A256

Thursday, 29th September | 11am

Farm of Billy Gilmore, Cortoon, Tuam, Co. Galway. Eircode: H54 AP28

You might also like to read this recent article on Contract Heifer Rearing in detail

For further information on Contract Heifer Rearing please contact your local Teagasc advisor.