University College Dublin (UCD) is constructing a new dairy research and education facility at Lyons Research Farm to support research programmes in dairy production with a focus on genetics, nutrition and herd health management.

With a capacity for 200 cows, the facility is part of a €2m plus investment supported by Dairymaster, Devenish Nutrition, Glanbia, Munster Cattle Breeding Group, Progressive Genetics and the Irish Holstein Friesian Breeders Association.

Continuing investment in research is critical to the success of the Irish dairy industry and to the quality of the education of the student population.

The herd will be comprised of spring calving and autumn calving groups and the emphasis initially will be on the role of supplementation in a grass based system to maximise production and improve milk quality throughout the season.

The new facilities will come on stream in the spring of 2015, just as the dairy industry in Ireland begins a major expansion following the abolition of milk quotas and they will facilitate research which will complement that being carried at other research centres in Ireland.

The research outputs from the new facility will be made available through publications, a dedicated website and open days on the farm. The facility will serve as an international showcase for the best in Irish dairy technology.

Construction will commence in May and will finish in early 2015, to enable the planned herd expansion to coincide with the abolition of milk quotas in April 2015.

The development will also provide new facilities for teaching students in agriculture and veterinary medicine.

Lyons Research Farm consists of more than 580 acres located near the village of Newcastle in Co Kildare. It is used for teaching and research field activities by the UCD College of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, University College Dublin.

Main picture above Dr Karina Pierce, UCD and Dr John Daly, Research and Innovation Manager, Dairymaster at the launch of the UCD Lyons Dairy Research and Education facility

Launch of UCD Lyons Dairy Research and Teaching Unit in the Science Centre

Pictured: A selection of UCD Staff and Sponsors attending a launch of the UCD Lyons Dairy Research and Education Facility. From left to right: Finbar Mulligan, UCD; Charles Gallagher, Irish Holstein Friesian Association; Karina Pierce, UCD; Pat Ryan, Glanbia; Edmund Harty, Dairymaster; Orla Feely, UCD; Michael Monaghan, UCD; Pat Mulvehill, Munster Cattle Breeding Group; Brendan Scanlon, Progressive Genetics; Morgan Sheehy, Devenish Nutrition and Denis Herlihy, Glanbia