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Bord Bia Honours Ireland’s Sustainable Farmers

GII All Co-op Dairy

Congratulations to Glanbia Ireland milk suppliers Shane and Dermot O’Loughlin, Oghill, Co. Kildare on taking home the award for the ‘Large Herd Category’ at the Awards ceremony.

Bord Bia honoured Ireland's most sustainable, efficient and environmentally friendly family farms on Wednesday 12 December, at the Origin Green Farmer Awards in Killenard, Co.Laois.

Over 240 farmers and senior representatives from farming organisations and the agri-food industry gathered to celebrate the achievements of the 39 finalists, drawn from the dairy, beef and horticulture sectors across the country.

Eleven category winners were announced on the night following a rigorous process that included on-farm judging by teams from Bord Bia, Teagasc, the Irish Farmers Journal, UCD and IT Blanchardstown (see list of winners below).

Opening the awards ceremony Bord Bia's Chairperson Dan MacSweeney highlighted the importance of sustainable food production to the future of Irish farming and rural economies: “Origin Green can help shape a future that’s better for all of us. The rewards for our success in this regard are potentially huge. In addition to supporting on-farm sustainability efforts, Origin Green supports our marketing and sales efforts, playing a key role in helping us meet the ambitious targets of Food Wise 2025, which see our food and drink exports grow to €19 billion annually by the middle of the next decade.

This isn’t just a win for industry, it translates into more value coming back to the rural economy right across Ireland, as growth in sustainably produced food and drink delivers jobs and activity to local communities now and in the future.”

Presenting the awards Bord Bia CEO, Tara McCarthy paid tribute to the achievements of all the finalists: “The pursuit of excellence by Origin Green farmers is at the heart of the Irish food and drink industry’s export success in a challenging, consumer-driven trading environment.

Bord Bia highlights these family farms to food buyers who are looking for living examples of the highest values in Irish food production. When they visit these farms they see the commitment to protecting the land and its environment for future generations of food producers and consumers.

Tonight’s finalists are producing beef with a 40% lower carbon footprint than the average producer and producing milk with a 16% lower carbon impact. These are the solid proof points that impress international customers who are seeking solutions to their consumers` demands for more sustainably produced food. It is from this solid foundation that we can build durable relationships with food buyers for the food we export.”

All finalists will be invited by Bord Bia to participate in an organised visit to an overseas market to see how Bord Bia uses their achievements in sustainability to win new business.

Category Winners:

Dairy

Small/med herd

Lakeland Co-op

Rath, Co. Offaly

 

Reduced carbon footprint

The Crowley Family (Trevor Crowley)

Dairygold co-op

Lissarda, Co. Cork

 

Large herd

Shane and Dermot O’Loughlin

Glanbia

Oghill, Co. Kildare

 

Horticulture

 

Mushrooms

Reilly Mushrooms

Athlone, Co. Westmeath

 

Protected crops and fruit

Flynn’s Tomatoes

Bealinstown, Swords, Co. Dublin

 

Potatoes

Kilmore Potatoes

Ballyhealy, Kilmore, Co. Wexford

 

Field vegetables

John B Dockrell

Screen, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford

 

Beef

 

Suckler to beef

Noel Farrell

Golden, Cashel, Co. Tipperary

 

Suckler to weanling/store production

Nicholas Bergin

Roscrea, Co. Tipperary

 

Weanling/store to beef production

David Auchmuty

Ballygalda, Co. Roscommon

 

Dairy calf to beef production

Derek and Gareth Peoples

Carrigans, Co. Donegal

Carrigans, Co. Donegal

 

First Published 18 December 2018

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