Grassland Farmer of the Year: John Macnamara from Knockainey
THE OVERALL winner of the Grassland Farmer of the Year Award is John Macnamara from Knockainey.
Now in its second year, the awards with an overall prize fund of €30,000, funded by the Department of Agriculture, recognises and rewards farmers who are achieving high levels of grass utilisation in a sustainable manner.
Fourteen finalists gathered in Teagasc Moorepark this Monday for the ceremony.
Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said: “The feedback from around the country is that the competition is really showing farmers what can be done with attention to detail and grass measurement. We have 14 finalists here today, who all have shown leadership and a high standard in grassland management and I want to congratulate all 14 for an outstanding performance.
“While the accolades will go to the nine individual award winners, everybody here today is really showing leadership to the industry and in years like this, that is extremely important,” he added.
As well as John and Olivia Macnamara winning the overall award they also took home the dairy enterprise award.
There was more Limerick success as Niall Moloney, Crecora was named Young Grassland Farmer of the Year. While John Leahy, Athea, won the most improved grassland merit award.
Teagasc chairman, Liam Herlihy said: “2018 has taught us how important grass production is to our beef, sheep and dairy enterprises. It gives us our comparative advantage in ruminant based production systems. This competition showcases the top farmers in the country who are using best practice in grassland management and the latest research on their farms.
“The Teagasc web based grassland system, PastureBase Ireland, is a critical resource to these farmers’ grassland management systems.”
The Grassland Farmer of the Year awards are part of the Teagasc Grass10 campaign which is supported by Teagasc, the Department of Agriculture, AIB, FBD Insurance, Grassland Agro and the Irish Farmers Journal.