Club Committee 2018
|Vice Chairperson||Anne Butler|
|Secretary||Oliver Costello||086 8598273|
|Pollagh, Newtowncashel, Longford, Co. Longford|
Club Notes – Spring 2018
As another year of activities for the West Midlands club comes to a close & we review what has been another successful year for the club.
The year started off on the 22nd of March with the club A.G.M. John Taylor was elected Chairman & Anne Butler was elected to the position of vice chairperson. All other officers were re-elected to their positions for another year. The guest speakers on the night were Samaritan Volunteers, Geraldine Farrell & Pierce Murphy who gave a talk on the role of the Samaritans & how they can be contacted.
Breeding & Fertility Workshop
In April, a breeding & fertility workshop took place on the farm of Martin & Maureen Reilly. James Quinn MRCVS of Genexcel Ireland covered all aspects of artificial insemination & reproductive management.
Two field evenings took place over the summer months. Our hosts were Martin & Geraldine Garvey and Stanley & Evelyn Wright. Our thanks to the host families for agreeing to allow club members to visit their farms, for the high standard of stock they put on display & for the refreshments served. A special thanks to the signs & arrows officer on duty at both events.
Our herd’s competition was a great success this year. Judging took place over 3 days in mid / late June. The prize giving barbeque took place in Feericks Hotel, Rathowen on Friday 7th of July. A very special Thank You to our competition judge, Brendan Gildea ‘Riverview’ herd for his time & interest when judging the competition. I can’t forget to say thank you to the team of drivers for their help during the competition. Many thanks to the competition sponsor Aurivo & also to the various AI companies who sponsored semen for the fundraising auction on the night.
Our club tour took place on Friday 25th of August which took us to 3 farms in Counties Westmeath & Meath. First stop was the 103 cow herd of Peter Robinson, Ballinagore, Kilbeggan, Co. Westmeath. Next we visited the farm of Andrew Revington, Delvin, Co. Westmeath where we saw his 150 cow herd of high yielding Holsteins. Finally the short trip across the county border to the 240 cow herd of Paul Feeney, Ballivor, Co. Meath.
Once again the hospitality & openness of the host families was a pleasure to witness & we thank them for looking after us on the day.
A club meeting was held on the 21st of November as part of the club’s winter programme of events.
The guest speakers were Adrian McKeague, Lakeland Dairies & Roberta McDonald, Aurivo Co-Op, both of whom gave a review of their respective dairy programmes since they started in 2013 (Lakeland) & 2014
Adrian, a dairy development officer with Lakeland outlined the programmes 3 main areas of focus.
1) Improving the efficiency of milk production.
2) Planning for sustainable & profitable expansion.
3) Planning for new entrants to dairying.
Roberta, the Aurivo Co-Op Farm Profitability Programme Manager outlined some of the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) they are working towards, for example.
1) Improving farmers lifestyle
2) +5% 6 week calving
3) +0.5 ton dry matter utilised
4) +0.1% protein
5) Increase AI born & 24 month old calved heifers.
At our January committee meeting alot of progress was made towards the 2018 programme of events. The hosts were confirmed for the 2 field evening & the herds competition judge was announced. 3 herds were also shortlisted as possible hosts for the club tour.
To all club officers & indeed the members, who helped out in any way during 2017 – Thank You.
Finally, to our former PRO, Haesel Dickson who stepped down from the position during the summer. I have to say thank you for your attention to detail over the last number of years. The print media side of the role is being looked after by myself on a temporary basis.
Oliver Costello, Secretary