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Food and Feed Security

Technical Advice for Farmers to Improve Food and Feed Security. This advice is from the National Fodder and Food Security Committee (NFFSC)*. Read more about the NFFSC here

This week is Critical for Grass and Silage - Advice for Farmers Find out more here

Pigs and Poultry | Tillage CropsGrassland Farmers | Fertiliser survey | Grass Silage Stock Checker

Pigs and Poultry

Read Pig Sector Cashflow Forecast Jan - Dec 2022 (pdf) April Update Graphs - Teagasc Pig Development Dept (pdf)

  • Update cash flows and financial situation to enable decision making
  • Assess breeding decisions with the objective of reducing options financial risk and increasing health status 
  • Review feed demand and diet formulation to make sure you are using the most cost efficient diet
  • Ensure that animal welfare is of the highest standard 

Tillage Crops

NEW Tillage Incentive Scheme and Ploughing Grassland for Tillage Crops

  • Review your 2022 costs and returns projections for each crop
  • Secure fertilizer supplies for crops
  • Consider sowing additional protein crops
  • Investigate opportunities to grow extra cereals, including certified seed production 
  • Consider leasing/renting to a specialised tillage farmer

Grassland Farmers

  • Complete a feed budget for next winter including a reserve of at least 1 months fodder
  • Close sufficient area for first cut silage based on fodder budget
  • Graze swards in rotation at a high quality growth stage (10cm height) to improve animal performance.  Skip heavy swards for silage when growth allows
  • Prioritise available slurry to silage ground and lower fertility fields
  • For first cut silage, apply enough fertiliser to ensure overall supply of 100 kg/ha (80 units/acre) of Nitrogen from slurry plus fertiliser. Make sure enough P, K and Sulphur is supplied to grow the crop
  • Roll silage ground as required and where soil conditions are suitable
  • Plan for lime application this year where low soil pH needs to be addressed. Applying lime on bare ground after first cut is a good opportunity


This week is critical for grass and silage - Advice for farmers

Feed & Food Security

Download as a PDF here This week is Critical for Grass and Silage - Advice for Farmers


Grass Silage Stock Checker

Use our online stock checker here to calculate:

  1. Grass Silage Required for Next Winter
  2. Grass Silage Available for Next Winter


Further information

Contact your local Advisory Office for further information and advice. Find your nearest office here

More advice for drystock farmers - Food and Fodder Security

More advice for dairy farmers Food and Fodder Security  


Fertiliser Surveys Summary

Drystock | TillageDairy |

Drystock (n=688) 

  • 28% of drystock farmers have bought no fertiliser to date
  • 43% are finding it difficult to get fertiliser delivered - 63% of these stating either the merchant cannot guarantee delivery or delivery will be delayed
  • 46% are paying 100% upfront for fertiliser - only 25% being given more than one months credit
  • 87% of drystock farmers plan on spreading less fertiliser on grazing ground - 10 – 30% reduction (43% of farmers) - 30 – 50% reduction (31% farmers)
  • Only 28% of drystock farmers plan on making more than 75% of their fodder for next winter in 1st cut silage
  • Farmers plan on spreading less fertiliser on silage ground - 10–20% reduction (37% of farmers), 20–30% reduction (23% of farmers), 30–50% reduction (15% of farmers)

Tillage - key messages (n=440)

Phosphorus & Potassium  Fertiliser

  • 69% have >75% of their P & K requirements for the season in stock or awaiting delivery. (41% all requirements)
  • 12% have less than 25% in stock or awaiting delivery. (4% none).

Nitrogen Fertiliser

  • 63% have >75% of their N requirements for the season in stock or awaiting delivery. (35% all requirements) - 13% have less than 25% in stock or awaiting delivery. (3% none)
  • 69% have made no changes to their cropping plans as a result of fertiliser supply/price. If changing – increasing beans, followed by spring oats
  • 72% have already used or plan to use organic manures this season - But unsure how much available or used
  • 31% plan no reduction to normal chemical fertiliser application this year - further 22% plan on a minimal 10 kg/ha reduction

Other issues

  • 55% said they would increase tillage area if more land became available
  • 39% said that access to additional credit is an issue this year

Dairy

  • Just over half have some fertiliser spread
  • ¾ have reduced application rates YTD
  • Almost half intend to spread less for silage ground
  • 60% are behind target on grazing ground
  • 1/3 have not yet purchased 50% of the year’s requirement


*The National Fodder and Food Security Committee is tasked by government with preparing an industry response, contingency plans and advice to assist farmers in managing their farm enterprises through a period of high input price inflation and potential supply pressures.