JOHN HANNIGAN, a dairy farmer from Dromcollogher, has been named amongIreland’s ‘greenest’ farmers at Bord Bia’s inaugural Origin Green Sustainable Producer Awards.
Along with seven other beef and dairy producers,Mr. Hannigan’s farmwas chosen as one of the most sustainable, efficient and environmentally-friendly farms in the country, following a ceremony in Portlaoise attended by over 230 farmers and senior representatives from the farming and agri-food industry.
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Nominated in the Large Herd Category, John Hannigan milks 112 cows on 63 hectares and supplies the Kerry Co-Op. The farm is where Highmount Kenny was bred, and judges were impressed by Mr. Hannigan’s management of breeding, with a careful focus on milk solid production.
A total of 28 farms from across the country were selected as finalists for the competition, from which eight producers were awarded as winners of their particular category.
DAIRY AWARDS – OVERALL CATEGORY WINNERS:
· Large Herd Category:The judges were particularly impressed by John HanniganfromDromcollogher Co. Limerick who suppliesKerry Co-Op, who hasfocussed on breeding to build a solid foundation for his farm of over 110 Friesian cows.
· Small/Medium Herd Category:According to the judges John Joe and Theresa O’Sullivan’s dairy farm inRosscarbery Co. Cork, supplyingLisavaird Co-op, is a hive of productivity. They milk 70 cows on 45 hectares, with cows grazing over 300 days a year every year. Biodiversity was noted to be a key feature on this excellent dairy farm with a habitat, some woodland, an ancient fort and an orchard where John Joe practices his hobby of beekeeping.
· Liquid/Winter Milk Category:Dermot Sherry, Drumhillock, Co. Monaghan is using grass measurement and management to improve productivity on his farm. Supplying LacPatrick Co-Op, cow numbers this year reached apeak of 118, up from 70 just a few years ago.
· Carbon Footprint Reduction Category:Patrick Brennan, a farmer outside Ballingarry, Co. Tipperary, who milks over 170 cows and supplies Arrabawn Co-Op, has made small changes resulting in large efficiency gains. Patrick’s attention to detail and tweaks to his system have resulted in a reduction of the carbon footprint of this farm.
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