A farm walk titled “Dairy Potential in the North-West; Dealing with Land Fragmentation” will take place on Joseph Dunphy’s farm in Co. Sligo on later this month.

From milking 50 cows in 2008 and finishing all bull calves to factory, the Dunphy’s decided to go full-time into dairying and get out of beef.

Joseph now milks 220 cows – all of this on a fragmented farm, some of which is leased, and by 2017, Joseph plans to be milking 280 cows.

Joseph Dunphy will give a comprehensive presentation on the production and financial dimensions surrounding his growth and expansion programme including increasing the milk platform size, building of the milking parlour in 2008, building an underpass, maximising efficiency with increased livestock numbers, grass management and effective animal husbandry.

The farm walk takes place at the Dunphy’s farm at Main Street, Easkey, Co. Sligo on Friday, April 17 at 10.30am.

Alternative viable dairying models

There will be a panel discussion chaired by Agricultural Consultant, Matt Ryan addressing alternative viable dairying models where dairy farmers are faced with the challenges of farming fragmented holdings.

Included in the discussion will be share-farming land with neighbours, once a day milking, second milking parlours, the role of contract rearing, milk production partnerships and taxation incentives promoting consolidation of fragmented holdings.

In addition there will be on-farm stands dealing with finance, breeding and grass.

The event is being organised as part of Aurivo and Teagasc Joint Farm Focus Programme with support from IFAC Accountants.

The programme brings together the full resources of Teagasc and Aurivo in mounting an intensive and co-ordinated advisory programme on all aspects of efficient milk production, and is led by Dr Roberta McDonald, Aurivo’s Farm Profitability Programme manager.