news that a joint venture between itself and Dutch based
Royal A-ware will build a new continental-style cheese
manufacturing facility in Belview. This follows on from
a recent initiative to build a mozzarella manufacturing
facility at Portlaoise, though this has run into a problematic
planning objection from a local resident. It is proposed
that a total of 140 million will be invested in the new
Belview cheese-making facility, which is scheduled for
commissioning in 2022 and will produce continental
cheeses in various formats.
Once fully commissioned, the new facility will have a
production capacity of 450 million litres of milk per annum
with 80 full time jobs created. Milk used in the production
process will be sourced from Glanbia suppliers and the
cheese will be marketed and sold to global customers.
Jim Bergin, Chief Executive of Glanbia Ireland commented:
"This new partnership will create a new route to market for
Glanbia Ireland suppliers' milk and diversify our portfolio of
consumer dairy products and ingredients. Since 2014 we
have invested 343m to facilitate a 42 per cent increase
in milk production by Glanbia farmers. This proposed new
investment is now required to diversify our product mix and
to ensure that our suppliers have the opportunity to fulfil
their growth ambitions."
First opened in 2015, the existing Glanbia infant nutrition
plant at Belview is currently the subject of a 130 million
investment to install a third drier and expand production
months titled, "Focus for 150," which focuses on the
most important 150 days of a cow's yearly cycle.
This includes the 50 days before calving and the 100
days after calving. While weather, grass growth and
milk price can be the major drivers of profitability,
the management of the cow during this period is
something that can enhance or erode this profitability
-- but it is 100 per cent within our control.
As per previous articles, maintaining the body
condition score (BCS) of the cow and avoiding any
health issues during this period is key to this success.
Minimising the loss post-calving to less than 0.5 BCS
units, which is about 4 percent of the body weight of
the cow, is no easy task.
Dry matter intake (DMI) is a key driver of this, and
research has shown that negative energy balance
(NEB) is more closely related to DMI than milk yield. If
you find that your cows are losing condition post-
calving, focus more about improving intake than milk
Cows that are overweight or have had a di cult
calving or metabolic issue will struggle to eat enough
post-calving, so getting the dry cow and transition
period right is crucial. In simple terms, a cow
producing 27 litres will consume approximately 18
kg DMI. Measuring how much grass is available and/
or that they are eating will help you determine the
level of supplement needed. Remember: cows are
outside to eat the grass, not to admire the scenery,
even it is a lovely, mild day in the absence of grass.
They need a guaranteed level of intake; the level
of supplementation should increase on a wet day,
and the level of concentrate should increase if they
are housed on silage. This becomes increasingly
important as yield increases.
Base your diet on the type of cow and the conditions
on your farm. For instance, a cow producing 27 litres
solely on 65 DMD silage must be allocated 9 kg of
concentrate. This amount is reduced to 6 kg once
they are at grass by day and to about half that once
they are at grass full-time, depending on grass quality
and availability. If this sounds like a lot, you must ask
yourself if you have the right cows for your system.
In the absence of these levels, cows will milk and
produce very good levels of solids for six weeks -- and
then fall on their faces. Making a higher-quality silage
or an alternative forage available is an issue for many
farms, but it will further reduce the requirements for
Also, pay attention to the top 20 per cent of the cows,
as well as the average, as these are the cows under
the most pressure. Taking 2 per cent o the protein of
the concentrate will also help alleviate the pressure on
these cows, although this diet should be balanced in
the presence of a silage analysis.
In summary, focus on fulfilling the intake requirements
of your fresh cows and pay attention to the
concentrate requirements, as based on the average
and the top 20 per cent of your cows.