The 2017-2018 season has become Livestock Improvement Corporation’s (LIC’s) most successful to date, following the sale of its one millionth straw offshore this season.

News of the milestone was recently confirmed by the New Zealand farmer-owned co-operative.

Popular ‘Premier Club’ bull Priests Sierra was the one millionth straw sold; it was purchased by young farmer Bill Keane from Kilmacthomas, Co. Waterford, a spokesperson for LIC confirmed to AgriLand.

Recently, Timothy Bunnett, Linda O’Neill and Mairead Hayes from LIC Ireland – along with Larry Burke from Eurogene – joined Keane on his impressive 400-cow Grouse Lodge farm.

It was there that they presented the farmer and his team with a New Zealand hamper to celebrate the occasion.

L-R: Tim Bunnett, sales operation’s manager, LIC Europe; Bill Keane, farmer; Linda O’Neill, sales manager, LIC Ireland; Maireid Hayes, office administrator, LIC Ireland; Tommy Connors, AI technician; and Larry Burke, territory manager Ireland, Eurogene AI Services. Image source: Noel Browne

Having established his herd in 2011, Keane has since then worked to grow the number of cows he is milking as well as their performance.

Commenting on the matter, he said: “Having spent two years in New Zealand, I was very happy with the genetics of the herds and the production and performance of the cows.

So, when I came back to farm in Ireland, I wanted to go breeding with LIC. I feel I’ve bred better genetics and milk solids into the cows and I am very pleased with how they are performing.

Meanwhile, it is with the help of innovative farmers, like Keane, that LIC can keep improving its products and solutions – working towards its goal of improving the prosperity of farmers all around the world – LIC Europe’s sales operations manager, Timothy Bunnett, said.

Continuing, he added: “We’re proud and pleased that our one millionth straw has ended up in Ireland and on Bill’s farm.

“The LIC Ireland team has been working with Bill for a number of years now and it really appreciates his ongoing support. The partnership we have built with farmers like Bill is important to us, as we continue to invest in Ireland.

We look forward to continuing our work with Bill and other Irish farmers in the years to come, with more exciting plans in the pipeline.

As the end of Ireland’s spring AI season draws nearer, farmers were reminded that LIC and Eurogene representatives are still available to offer advice and support.