Cow’s lick brings Limerick family good luck in Milk awards

Cow’s lick brings Limerick family good luck in Milk awards

Cream of the crop in Tournafulla: Gerard O’Dwyer, Maurice Curtin, Billy Cronin, and Jack Cahill, all of Dairygold, with Terence, Eileen, Brendan, Tara and Laura Reidy

MILK suppliers Terence, Eileen and Brendan Reidy, from Tournafulla, were declared the Limerick/Clare regional winners in the 2020 Dairygold Milk Quality Awards.

Husband and wife Terence and Eileen and son Brendan milk 176 cows and produced 524 kgs milk solids per cow in 2020. Brendan is married to Charlotte and it is a real family effort in Killaculleen.

The Reidys have a GEA parlour with cluster removers plus automatic wash and a bottom fill bulk tank. Their herd’s somatic cell count (SCC) was consistently less than 100,000 and total bacterial count (TBC) was less than 5,000.

They put this down to “having an excellent standard procedure and sticking rigorously to it”. The Reidys have also adopted the “right first time” approach as per the Dairygold Leanfarm principles.

The judges commented that while all three finalists in the region - the Reidys, Patrick O'Brien Ballycullhane, Kildimo, Christy Morey, Ballysheen, Sixmilebridge demonstrated exceptional quality - the Reidy family was “an excellent example of what good management, a positive attitude and an excellent working relationship can achieve”.

The impressive way in which the Reidys run their business to make it labour efficient was observed by the judges. The judges also commended the Reidys for their willingness to adopt new technologies on their farm to make improvements in efficiency.

Speaking about the awards, Dairygold chairman John O’Gorman said 2020 was a remarkably difficult year for everyone due to the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Throughout this our milk suppliers continued to step up to the mark and maintained the highest of standards our customers have come to expect of us. We are delighted to recognise this huge effort on an annual basis and bring the stories behind the success to the forefront.

“Our suppliers recognise the challenges faced by the industry and are embracing significant changes to meet sustainability pledges across their farm enterprises, all while delivering excellent milk quality,” said Mr O’Gorman.

The awards were based on 2020 milk quality data for all 2,700 Dairygold milk suppliers across counties Cork, Tipperary, Limerick and Clare. A shortlist was drawn up from each of the six Dairygold regions. Eighteen finalists underwent adjudication by Don Crowley, Teagasc dairy specialist and Ciara Donovan, Dairygold farm sustainability advisor.

While adhering to Covid-19 protocols and guidelines the judges visited the shortlisted farms to review their farm enterprises first-hand. The review took account of milk quality, dairy facilities, herd health and welfare, sustainability and general efficiencies and farm health and safety.

The judges chose one overall winner, six regional winners and a sustainability winner.

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