The diverse experiences at the National Dairy Council’s (NDC) distinctive navy blue NDC Dome has something for everyone at this year’s National Ploughing Championships in Ratheniska, Co Laois this week.

Visitors to the NDC Dome will have the opportunity to meet with some leading sports stars who are supporting the NDC’s work in promoting the positive role that milk may play in a number of aspects of sports nutrition.

  • Tuesday 24th September 11.00am – 3.00pm: former Rugby International Alan Quinlan
  • Wednesday 25th September 10.30am-11.00am: Irish Olympic boxer Darren O’Neill
  • Thursday 26th September 11.00am-3.00pm:  Tipperary hurler Pádraic Maher and Dublin hurling manager Anthony Daly (originally from Clare)

NDC nutritionists Dr Catherine Logan and Caroline O’Donovan will be available to discuss how research from Loughborough and Northumbria Universities respectively demonstrates the potential effectiveness of skimmed milk as a re-hydration drink after exercise; and the beneficial role milk and milk-based products may play in recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage.

NDC nutritionists will also be available to help with questions in relation to the role of milk and dairy as part of your family’s diet.


Chef Phelim Byrne will be inspiring taste buds and home culinary skills with free cookery demonstrations in the NDC Dome (S307) each day of the ploughing.  Phelim will be sharing easy cookery tips and showing the many versatile ways we can enjoy Irish milk, yogurt, cheese, butter and cream in some tasty recipe ideas.

Each day, free cookery demonstrations will be held in the NDC Dome at 11.00am, 12.30pm, 2.00pm and 3.30pm, with themes including Cooking on a Budget, Cooking with Kids, Impress Your Guests and Breezy Brunch.


The NDC actively supports and promotes Irish dairy excellence as part of its strategy. At the NDC Dome at the Ploughing, you will be able to find out about the dairy farmers who have been short-listed as national finalists for the 2013 NDC & Kerrygold Quality Milk Awards.


WorldSchool Milk Day is designated by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).  This year World School Milk Day is Wednesday 25 September – giving the NDC an opportunity to highlight its role in promoting school milk and in dairy education.

Children from 3rd class of Rath National School, Ballybrittas, Portlaoise, Co Laois will be at the NDC Dome on Wednesday morning to celebrate World School Milk Day. The schoolchildren are scheduled to meet with Irish Olympic boxer Darren O’Neill and Simon Coveney TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and The Marine at 10am.


The ever popular PhotoBooth returns to the NDC Dome with a chance to win a digital camera each day of the Ploughing. You can also test your football skills in an interactive penalty shoot-out zone where there is the opportunity each day to win some spot prizes. You can find out more about the work of the National Dairy Council on its website  You can also find the National Dairy Council on Facebook/NDCIreland or follow on Twitter @NDC_ie #Ploughing