Dairygold milk suppliers John, Teresa, John (Jnr) and Victor O`Sullivan from Whitechurch, East Cork were declared the overall winners of the 2020 Dairygold Milk Quality Awards and winners of the East Cork region for consistently supplying the best quality milk to Dairygold throughout 2020.
John and his wife Teresa have five sons John (Jnr), Victor, Donal, Robert and Colm.
John (Jnr) and Victor are now the fourth generation to run the family business with parents John and Teresa, ably assisted by Farm Manager David McGrath.
The O'Sullivan's currently milk 500 Pedigree Holstein Friesian cows under the renowned herd prefix of 'Lisduff'.
The Lisduff herd is a well-known national pedigree Holstein-Friesian herd with a strong emphasis on commercial milk production.
The judges commended all six regional finalists for demonstrating exceptional quality, but the O'Sullivan farm was noted for its outstanding attention to detail, exceptional production standards and an excellent example of what good management coupled with a willingness to strive for continuous improvement can achieve.
"2020 was a remarkably difficult year for everyone due to the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic,” Dairygold Chairman John O'Gorman said.
“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.
“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.
“The O'Sullivan's are an excellent example of how consistent improvements over time can yield fantastic results."
Dairygold Chief Executive Jim Woulfe added: "Our dairy industry is of vital importance to not just the farming community in Munster but also the national economy.
“Despite challenges from new and alternative foods, grass-fed milk remains the most natural, wholesome, nutritious food product available. Great credit must go to our milk suppliers who consistently maintain the high-quality standard of our milk 24/7 despite the challenges presented by COVID-19."
The awards were based on 2020 milk quality data for all 2,700 Dairygold milk suppliers across counties Cork, Tipperary, Limerick and Clare.
- East Cork Region: Regional Winner, John and Teresa O'Sullivan, Lisduff, Whitecork; Regional Finalist, Padraig Motherway, Barnfield, Ballymacoda; Regional Finalist, Kevin Morrissey, Roches Point.
- Mallow Region: Regional Winner, John and Paul Sheehan, Glashaboy, Carrignavar; Regional Finalist, John, Breda and Tim O'Riordan, Monee, Mourneabbey, Mallow; Regional Finalist, Shane O'Donoghue, Tullig, Millstreet.
- Mid Cork: Regional Winner, Michael and John Murphy, Skehanagh, Ballinhassig, Co Cork;
- Regional Finalist and Sustainability Winner, Michael and Emmet Bradfield, Tullyglass, Inniskeane; Regional Finalist, Conor McSweeney, Knockour, Aghabullogue.
- Mitchelstown: Regional Winner, John and Michelle Fox, Kilgarriffe, Ballylanders, Co Limerick; Regional Finalist, John Tobin, Coolaneague, Kilworth, Co Cork; Regional Finalist David Kent Jnr, Kilshanny, Mitchelstown.
- Limerick Region; Regional Winner, Terence Eileen and Brendan Reidy, Killaculleen, Tournafulla; Regional Finalist, Patrick O'Brien, Ballycullhane, Kildimo; Regional Finalist Christy Morey, Ballysheen, Sixmilebridge, Co Clare.
- Tipperary Region; Regional Winner, Thomas and Margaret Horan, Clonmel Road, Cashel; Regional Finalist, Michael Fogarty, Kildangan, Ballycommon; Regional Finalist, Michael and Anne Slattery, Kildonogue, Ardfinnan.