Phones 'hopping' as Limerick farmers look for fodder

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

Phones 'hopping' as Limerick farmers look for fodder

The first bale of UK hay being unloaded at the Dairygold store in Cappamore

TWO loads of UK fodder that arrived in Dairygold’s Cappamore store on Thursday evening was loaded and gone in minutes.

A third load is due in this Friday. Con Berkery, manager of Dairygold co-op Cappamore, said the phone has been “hopping” with farmers looking for fodder.

“There has been a lot of phone calls. I have over 25 names on a list at the moment and that number is growing all the time. We are trying to prioritise the critical ones and then hopefully keep everyone going,” said Con, who paused to answer a call from another farmer looking for fodder.

“Some lads have nothing. They have bought bales from other people. Others might have silage for now but they might not have silage in a week’s time so they are preparing for that. We’ve had another deluge of rain. Even when the weather does turn for the better it will take the bones of a week and a half before land is dry enough to get cattle out,” said the Con, as the phone rang again.

First in the queue for fodder on Thursday evening was Mike O’Donoghue.

He said he is out of his own supply and has been buying fodder locally for the last week.

”That’s running out as well,” said the dairy and beef farmer. Mike said it is “huge extra expense”. He headed off with two large bales of hay which he says will keep his cattle going for a couple of days.

Mike estimates it could be two weeks before he gets his cattle out on grass unless the weather changes dramatically.

”The fact that the bad weather has carried so far out into the spring is the issue,” said Mike.