AgriSearch recently hosted 34 leading dairy farmers from the Netherlands on a farmer exchange to Northern Ireland as part of the EuroDairy Project. This followed on from visits by the Northern Ireland EuroDairy pilot farmers to the Netherlands.
The Dutch farmers visited the Dairy Technology Centre at CAFRE’s Greenmount Campus, AFBI Hillsborough, Dale Farm headquarters as well as the farms of two Northern Ireland EuroDairy pilot farmers (Thomas Steele and Brian McCracken).
The highlight of the visit was a dinner in Parliament Buildings hosted by AgriSearch at which the Dutch farmers met members of the UFU Next Generation Forum. After a welcome by AgriSearch Chair Michael Bell and the former agricultural minister Michelle McIlveen, discussion was facilitated by renowned agricultural journalist and commentator Richard Wright.
The purpose of the EuroDairy farmer exchange programme is to enable the sharing of innovations across the participating countries. Amongst the issues discussed were ammonia mitigation, minimising nutrient losses, animal housing systems, grassland management, fixed milk pricing schemes, dairy cow nutrition and grassland management.