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Details of Sheep2015 Open Day Announced

Plans for a major National Sheep Open Day, Sheep2015, were announced at the Teagasc Centre in Athenry, Co. Galway. Sheep2015 is the major National Sheep event this year and takes place on Saturday, 20 June in Athenry, County Galway.

Organised by Teagasc in conjunction with UCD, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Irish Farmers Journal, Bord Bia and Sheep Ireland, Sheep2015 will be of interest to sheep producers from all over the country. There is a positive outlook for the sheep sector and this event will provide an opportunity for all involved in the industry to come together to develop the potential that the sheep industry offers.

Kepak in conjunction with Musgraves/Super Valu are the main sponsors for Sheep2015 with other sponsorship provided by MSD, Zoetis, FBD and Germinal Seeds. This year’s event will build on the successful Sheep 2010 and Sheep 2012 events.

Visitors will have the opportunity to gather information from 10 thematic villages covering Grassland Management, Hill Sheep Production, Flock Health, Sheep Breeding, Environment, Agricultural Education, Wool and Wool Products, Meat Industry and Markets, the Science of Farming and Health and Safety. Sheep2015 will include a series of practical, workshops, the Teagasc Sheep Research Demonstration flock, recently imported New Zealand Sheep Sheep Breed Championships and numerous commercial exhibits.

Frank Hynes, Co-chairman of the Sheep2015 organising committee, said: “Saturday the 20th of June is a date for the diary for all interested in the sheep sector. This event, Sheep2015, will be a must attend event for all sheep producers and the sheep industry. Up-to-date information on all aspects of sheep production will be available on the day”.

Teagasc’s Sheep Enterprise Leader, Michael Diskin said: “Sheep farmers have had a good year so far this year with favourable weather conditions during the critical spring lambing period. The sheep industry is important in Ireland and there are opportunities to improve efficiency and profitability on farms”.

During Sheep2015, farmers will be able to see the progress with the research demonstration farm in Athenry, review the results from the Teagasc BETTER farm sheep programme, and get information on the research that has commenced on the imported high genetic sheep from New Zealand.

Sheep production is a major economic activity in rural Ireland. Its contribution to the agricultural economy is valued at €205million. There are currently about 2.5.million ewes in 33,000 flocks in the country, with over 75% of the lamb produced exported.

Front Row: Tommy Boland, UCD; Angela Shine, account manager Kepak; Frank Hynes, Teagasc sheep specialist; Aine Mulvihill, Procurement, Kepak; Norina Coppinger, Teagasc Athenry; Michael Gottstein, Head of Sheep Knowledge Transfer, Teagasc; Stephanie Fitzgerald, lamb category manager, Musgraves/Supervalu.

Back Row: Loreto Ferguson, Teagasc ; Michael Diskin, Teagasc Sheep Enterprise Leader; Michael Geoghegan, Kepak Athleague; Bertie Mannion, Procurement, Kepak; Phillip Creighton, Teagasc researcher, Athenry; Ciaran Lynch, Teagasc Better Farm Sheep programme; Shane McHugh , Teagasc sheep specialist