Big need for sheep farm efficiencies

Small adjustments to sheep sector management can boost profitability, Teagasc director Prof Gerry Boyle said while unveiling the programme for Sheep2015, to be hosted in Teagasc Athenry, Co Galway, on June 20.

“Modest changes in some of the key drivers of production can have enormous benefits not only in terms of output, but most importantly in terms of profitability,” said Prof Boyle.

“We are committed to the sheep research and advisory programmes and this open day will provide a wonderful opportunity to see what Teagasc and the other organisations involved in organising and supporting Sheep2015 are delivering for sheep farmers.

“Results emerging from the research demonstration farm in Athenry are of huge interest and there are clear messages emerging from the expanded Teagasc Better Sheep Farm Programme.”

Earlier this week, Teagasc’s annual income survey revealed a huge gulf between profitable sectors such as dairy and struggling sheep farms. Dairy farm incomes reached an unprecedented high of €68,887 in 2014, with average family farm incomes rising 6% to €26,974. Sheep farms, however, were loss making, with the average EU direct payments of €18,859 comprising more than 100% of sectoral income.

Hosted by Teagasc with industry partners, Sheep2015 will offer sheep farmers advice on combating some of the challenges they face.


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