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Greenfield Dairy Open Day - 21 June

A national open day will take place on the Greenfield dairy farm in Kilkenny on Thursday 21 June. Now in its third year in milk production some clear messages are emerging and these will be communicated to dairy farmers at the open day. The financial performance of the farm will be presented including profit after repaying loans, cost of producing milk, and farm development costs.

The Greenfield farm in Kilkenny is a new dairy farm set up in autumn 2009. It was a tillage farm and was converted to a low-cost grass based large scale dairy farm. The industry stakeholders in this project are Glanbia, the Irish Farmers Journal, Teagasc, The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, FBD Trust and AIB. 

At the open day Brendan Horan and Padraig French, Teagasc Animal Production and Grassland Research Centre, Moorepark will set out the principles of profitable expansion of milk production post quota. They will describe the key risks associated with expansion and the technologies that will minimise the risks and drive profitable and sustainable growth.

Speaking in advance of the open day, Teagasc dairy specialist, Abigail Ryan said: “All dairy farmers should take the chance to hear and speak to the farm staff, listen to the lessons and mistakes made over the last three years, hear about what is making money and what is not, see the paddocks with the single grass varieties and observe the herd as it nears the end of the breeding season. The farm is the only farm in Ireland that has complete set grass monocultures (single grass varieties) and clover growing in all paddocks for the last three years. Most other farms have a mix of grass varieties in paddocks. The Teagasc advisory team will be available to take farmers around the farm to look at the different grass varieties”

Farmers will have the opportunity to walk among the cows, hear the current production and performance, and discuss the fertility performance of the herd which will be nearing the end of the breeding season. Farm staff and advisers will go through the infrastructure on the farm and how much money is spent on contracting out farm jobs such as heifer rearing, machinery contracting.

In the afternoon there will be a special forum with all the key stakeholders in the project taking part. The forum will discuss the challenges, problems, and successes to date and discuss any issues related to expansion in milk production.

The open day on Thursday, 21 June starts at 10.30 am.