Malting barley excellence celebrated

Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Tom Hayes, this week presented the 2013 Diageo and Boortmalt Malting Barley Excellence Awards in the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin.

Minister Hayes acknowledged the commitment of Diageo and Boortmalt to supporting and developing the Irish malting barley sector.

“Malting barley production is a very valuable and important section within the agri-food industry and the future prospects of this sector are very positive, primarily due to increasing global beer consumption and a general fall in the area of malting barley production internationally. It is widely accepted that Irish malt is regarded as being of a very high quality and thus a premium product, mainly due to our favourable growing conditions and the range of spring barley varieties available to our growers.”

The minister praised Diageo and Boortmalt Ireland along with the support of the Irish Farmers Association for arranging this awards event which he believes will promote excellence in malting barley production.

He noted that Diageo is the largest single purchaser of barley in Ireland and sources almost 90 per cent of its malting barley requirements locally through its supplier Boortmalt.  In his address the Minister of State confirmed: “The expansion by Boortmalt of its malting barley capacity is an important commitment to the sector and goes a long way towards supporting the validity of targets outlined in the development plan for Irish malting barley production and in turn maximising its contribution to Food Harvest 2020”

Finally, the Minister congratulated all the malting barley growers who were recipients of the awards.

Malting Barley Award Winners 2013: 

Philip Jackman, T/A Raheenduff Farm Ltd
Nolan Agri ltd, Bricketstown, Tagmon, Co Wexford
Micharl Mooney, Killanne, Enniscorthy, Wexford
Patrick Doyle, Brian Curran, Rathellin, Leighlinbridge, Carlow
Patrick Lennon, Lumcloone, Fenagh, Carlow
Colm Fingleton, Powelstown, Stradbally, Laois
John Paul Morrin, Russellstown, Athy
Thomas Fennelly, Cloncassin, Clonbullogue, Tullamore, Offaly
Eugene Ryan, Ballycarroll, Portlaoise, Laois
Ivan Holden, Clonmore, Fenagh, Carlow

Harvesting winter barley . Photo O’Gorman Photography.