The annual Irish Grassland Association National Dairy Conference, sponsored by Yara, takes place on Thursday 7 January 2016. The theme of this year’s event focuses on some of the strategies required to overcome volatility in dairying. Addressing the conference will be some of the countries’ leading dairy farmers, agri-consultants, researchers and agribusiness personnel.
Over the past decade milk price volatility has become an increasing feature of the Irish dairy industry. Farmers who recognise the challenges it presents and adapt accordingly will continue to operate profitable and viable farm businesses. This conference will focus on the key areas of grassland management; financial management; and cow nutrition and fertility to overcome the volatility they face outside the farm gate.
The latest recommendations and guidelines for maximising the use of grass, supported by data generated from farmer-users of the PastureBase programme will be discussed by Dr. Michael O’Donovan, Teagasc Moorepark. Cork-based dairy farmer Shane Crean will detail his transition to a grass-based system of milk production and his plans for the grazing season ahead on his farm.
Dr. Finbar Mulligan of UCD will review the latest research and guidelines for the management of spring calving dairy cows on low input grass based diets pre- and post-calving. This will be complemented by Dr. Mary Herlihy of Teagasc Moorepark who will review the key findings from her farm-based study of cows after calving. Mary will discuss the trends in body condition score change and reproductive performance that she observed on Irish dairy farms.
Developing a business strategy that will ensure dairy farms remain financially viable even in times of low milk prices is an area that is sure to be of interest to all
dairy farmers. Three speakers: Noel Gowen of Grasstec, Tadgh Buckley, AIB and Dave Shaene, FDC Accountants will each present their thoughts on current market outlook, who is making progress, and strategies dairy farmers should adopt for 2016.
On the morning of the 2016 Dairy Conference, there is an exclusive opportunity for 130 Irish Grassland Association members who book tickets to meet at a free private breakfast gathering prior to the conference. The 2016 guest speaker is Dr. Edmond Harty, DairyMaster. He will address the topic ‘The importance of innovative ability in times of volatility’. This element of the day is very popular and tickets have sold out within three days. Online booking is the quickest method to secure your tickets (plus you will also avail of the best discounted conference tickets detailed below). If you have any queries you can call the Office Manager, Maura Callery, on 087 9626483.
Early booking for Dairy Conference tickets is strongly encouraged as places will be limited and this event sells out early every year.
A special 20% discounted registration fee (€40 for Irish Grassland Association members and €80 for non-members) applies to registrations up to and including Monday 21st December. You can register and avail of these prepaid discounts by clicking here.
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