BETTER Farm Beef Challenge NI
BETTER Farm Beef Challenge NI is a collaborative venture between the College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), The Irish Farmers’ Journal and ABP Food Group and is now entering its eighth year and third phase of delivery.
The programme aims to improve the profitability and sustainability of suckler farms across Northern Ireland through the adoption of new technologies and knowledge transfer. Participating farmers have been selected for the programme based on their positive attitude to change and potential for business improvement.
Such has been the success of the programme that participants who entered Phase 2 in 2014 have seen their gross margins more than double in three years through the adoption of best practice and new technologies. This knowledge transfer scheme is managed on a day to day basis by CAFRE Beef and Sheep adviser Darryl Boyd. Currently there are ten farmers participating on the programme across Northern Ireland, with each farm business faced with different challenges to overcome.
The benefits realised from the programme are disseminated to the wider suckler beef farming community through regular farm visits and weekly features in the Irish Farmers’ Journal.
CAFRE adviser Darryl Boyd catches up with better farms beef challenge NI participant Jonathan Blair from Ballykelly to discuss what actions he takes to ensure he gets cattle out to graze and how they are managed then on.
CAFRE adviser Darryl Boyd as he catches up with Better farm beef challenge NI participant Oliver Mckenna from Eskra, Tyrone as he discusses how he uses 100% AI for all breeding on farm.
CAFRE Adviser Darryl Boyd catches up with Better farm beef challenge NI participant Declan Rafferty from Pomeroy, County Tyrone as he discusses how he has put plans in place to allow a quality harvest of silage in May.
CAFRE Adviser Darryl Boyd and Better farms beef challenge NI participant Alastair McNeilly discuss how to ensure you maintain grazing quality and make the most of grass on your farm.