Farmers have been advised to switch from barley to crops such as rape, beet or maize, as they run out of time to sow spring cereals.

Teagasc advisors said there was no point in risking poor establishment in wet soils, and pointed out feed cereal profit margins are expected to be low, even without crop establishment difficulties.

Last Sunday’s rain across the southern coast probably ruled out late cereal sowings for many farmers, ranging from 44.1 millimetres at Met Éireann’s Cork Airport weather station, to 26.3mm at Valentia.

No other weather station nationally had more than 6.5mm of rain on Sunday.

ICMSA Dairy Committee Chairperson Gerald Quain has warned that weather-induced costs are adding to “a very precarious financial situation” on dairy farms. 

He said reduced milk solids could knock 1.5 cents per litre off milk prices, costing an average 300,000 litre supplier about €4,500 over the year, and necessary increased meal feeding could cost an extra €1,000 per month.

He appealed to processors to hold the line on milk prices, warning dairy farmers are already under “savage pressure”.


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