The Milk for Profit programme provides an advisory support structure to all Arrabawn suppliers. The aim of the programme is to promote the development of robust dairy farming systems that can withstand milk price volatility. By working together we aim to ensure that all Arrabawn suppliers are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge required to run a profitable dairy enterprise. The objectives of the programme are:
- To increase grass growth and utilisation on farms
- To upskill suppliers in the areas of financial planning and budgeting
- To improve the six week calving rate and calving interval from the current co-op averages of 60% and 389 days
- To increase milk solids production per cow through optimum grassland management and improvements in herd fertility
- To improve milk quality and maximise compliance with the sustainable dairy assurance scheme
Delivery of these objectives will be achieved through the provision of the latest Teagasc research and technologies to all our suppliers. Knowledge transfer will be achieved via three core channels
- Development farms - Five development farms from north Tipperary, Galway and Offaly have been selected to demonstrate the benefits of technology adoption and best practice in the areas of financial management and planning, compact calving, grass utilisation, breeding management, herd health and milk quality. Over the next three years each farms progress, development and performance will be documented and freely available to all our suppliers.
- Workshops - A series of workshops will be delivered across the Arrabawn catchment area to ensure our suppliers are adequately supported in their efforts to adopt best practices in areas such as grassland, fertility, milk quality and cost control.
- New Entrant Support - As part of this programme we will also provide a dedicated service to our new entrant suppliers including one to one advice and exclusive meeting tailored to meet their specific needs. If you know of any neighbours or friends considering entering dairy production we would appreciate if you let them of our service.
Aine O’Connell has been employed as coordinator of the programme. Aine completed her PhD at the University of Wisconsin and Teagasc Moorepark in December 2015. Her research investigated factors that influence bulk tank milk quality. Aine can be contacted at 087-0963869 should you require further information about the programme.