Greenfield Farm looks at ways to deal with extreme weather

A new report has been produced by an independent team of experts which examines how Greenfield Dairy Farm, and farms in general, can better prepare for extreme weather conditions.

The report was commissioned earlier this year, after the Co. Kilkenny demonstration farm suffered through two damaging weather events: Storm Emma and the ‘Beast from the East’ cold snap.

These events resulted in considerable damage for the farm, as well as a loss of livestock – an experience shared by many farms around the country, but especially around the east and south.

On Greenfield Farm, these weather conditions resulted in the deaths of two cows and six calves over a three-day period.

The new report, drawn-up by independent experts – led by Tom Moran, former secretary general of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine – set down a number of recommendations for the future, which have been accepted by the interested parties in Greenfield Dairy Farm. 

Among these recommendations is a review of the governance and management structure at the farm, in order to “provide clearer lines of command and responsibility, and enhance communication among all those involved”.

The report also suggests that the stakeholders of the farm review and update their safety statement, and to prepare contingency plans to deal with similar events in the future.

It was also recommended that, despite Greenfield Farm’s good record of animal care, improved facilities were still needed to protect animals.

The farm has already undertaken several steps to mitigate weather damage after its experience this year.