Teagasc Green Acres Dairy Calf to Beef 2019 programme launched

 

The second phase of the Teagasc Green Acres Dairy Calf to Beef programme has been launched.

The programme aims to share information from 14 participating farmers with beef producers right across the country to help them improve the performanace of their businesses. This is a joint industry funded initiative that is supported by MSD Animal Health, Volac, Corteva Agriscience, Liffey Mills, Munster Bovine, Drummonds and AgriLand. The programme will follow the progress made over the next three years by 14 beef farmers who are all buying dairy bred calves. It follows on from the very successful first phase of the programme that ended in 2018.

Two dedicated full-time programme advisors will work closely with each of the farmers where they will focus on improving their overall farm profitability through better grassland management, calf rearing skills, animal health, financial management and overall farm planning. 

Speaking at the launch Professor Gerry Boyle, Teagasc Director, said: “I’m delighted to launch the second phase of the Teagasc Green Acres Calf to Beef Programme. I would like to thank all of the beef farmers and their families who have agreed for their farms to be used as demonstration farms. The first phase of the programme clearly demonstrated that where the participating farmers focused on the key drivers of profitability in calf to beef systems, there was a substantial increase in both their output and profitability per hectare. 

General Manager of MSD Animal Health Ireland, Fergal Morris said: “On behalf of the industry sponsors of the Teagasc Green Acres Dairy Calf to Beef Programme we are delighted to be involved in sponsoring this exciting farm programme. Demonstrating best practice on beef farms, from purchase through to finish of dairy bred calves, in systems that are sustainable and profitable is a key goal of the programme”. 

Each of the farms will have the performance of their stock monitored on a regular basis, will complete a Teagasc eProfit Monitor annually, will record their grass covers weekly on PastureBase Ireland and will have a three year plan including a whole farm nutrient management plan drawn up for them.