‘We’re going to be looking at a lot of 2t/ac crops’

The drought has affected all tillage crops this season, but more so in the south-east of the country.

A Wexford Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) grain meeting will bring farmers together to discuss the current situation. The meeting will take place in the Farm Centre in Enniscorthy at 8:30pm tonight (Wednesday, August 1).

AgriLand spoke to Wexford IFA Grain Committee chairman John Murphy about the current situation in the county.

“Crops are terrible at the minute. Spring barley crops are in trouble. We’re going to be looking at a lot of 2t/ac crops.

The winter barley played out OK and winter wheat is doing OK.

John went on to describe his own situation.

“I have one 100ac block of spring barley and it won’t do 1t/ac. The late-sown barley, on heavy land, that didn’t get any rain is very bad. The early-sown barley on dry land has suffered more from the drought.

I’d be very concerned about the very first and the very last crops sown. The crops in the middle might be OK. 2t/ac is going to be a good crop I think.

Speaking about other crops John stated: “Beans are a loss; they’re ripening in now when they shouldn’t be coming in for another month and a half, while some of the late-sown beet never came up at all.”

Positive options to be discussed at meeting

While spring yields are expected to perform poorly in the area, the meeting will focus on positives, such as improving grain price, which will help to compensate for low yields.

Forage crop options for the winter may also provide an opportunity for extra income. These topics will be discussed on the night along with others outlined below.

Speakers on the night include:
  • Shay Phelan, Teagasc – catch crop options;
  • Pat Farrell, IFA – grain markets;
  • Tom Shortt, IFA – renewables;
  • Mark Browne, IFA – malting barley and CAP reform;
  • A representative from Permanent TSB.