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Dairy Discussion Group Innovation Event to Showcase Top 10 Teams

ACCBank, Teagasc, ICBF and the Irish Farmers’ Journal, will hold the inaugural Dairy Discussion Group Innovation Event on the 4th December at the Tullamore Court Hotel, Tullamore. The event, will showcase the 10 discussion groups which have been shortlisted as part of this exciting new project-based competition for dairy discussion groups.

The new competition was launched earlier this year, with the objective of stimulating discussion among dairy discussion groups to allow for the development of the stronger bonds between members; and also to encourage the development of profit or lifestyle based innovations for widespread farm adoption.

The competition has attracted significant interest and the calibre of entries was extremely high. From the initial applications, 10 discussion groups were shortlisted and the event will provide a platform for these groups to showcase their fresh thinking and fight it out for a share of the €20,000 prize fund.

The event will include a presentation from each of the shortlisted teams, followed by a five minute Q&A session, which is open to the floor. The judging panel comprises representatives from the four competition partners - ACCBank, Teagasc, ICBF and the Irish Farmers Journal - as well as a guest judge Mr. Michael McElroy, from Intertrade Ireland Acumen. Pat Dillon, Head of Animal and Grassland Programme at Teagasc will chair the morning session, with Matt Dempsey, editor of the Irish Farmers’ Journal, taking over for the afternoon session.

Pat Byrnes, Agri Manager, ACCBank Limerick commented: “We are very pleased to be part of this innovative event, and we expect this to be a lively, informative day and a great opportunity for other discussion groups, not involved in the competition, to pick up new ideas for 2013.”

Tom O’Dwyer, Head of the Dairy Knowledge Transfer Teagasc said: “We have been very impressed with the quality of the applications for this competition - they have demonstrated that great things can be achieved by dairy farmers coming together and applying innovative thinking to available technologies to deliver new solutions to farm challenges.”