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Friday 2 December 2016

My week: Jimmy Cosgrave Jnr, Enfield, Co Meath

Ken Whelan

Published 23/09/2015 | 02:30

Jimmy Cosgrave Jnr: Prices have improved
Jimmy Cosgrave Jnr: Prices have improved

"Things are good at the moment and prices have improved. I sold nine Charolais at Carnaross last week for an average of €2.40 a kilo and I'm happy."

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These are the bright and optimistic words of Jimmy Cosgrave Jnr who runs a cattle and sheep enterprise on a farm outside Enfield in Co Meath in partnership with his father, Jimmy Snr.

"You have no problem getting good prices for good cattle at Carnaross and things are much better now than they were two years ago.

"The beef men are not cribbing and crying like the dairymen. The dairymen were told by the powers that be a few years ago that everything would be great and now the Russian and Chinese markets are gone. I have every sympathy for them but that's the way things go in farming," Jimmy adds.

The Cosgrave family runs a herd of 150 cattle and some 400 plus sheep at any given time and are currently buying in store lambs for the new season.

"The lamb price will improve when the lower quality stock is sold off," predicts Jimmy.

At the moment he is finishing the upgrading of the fencing on the farm and everything is going to plan.

The only cloud in Jimmy's sky appears to be the the current form of the Meath GAA team which he says is a "disgrace" with all the sadness and earnestness of a man who saw the gold standard days of Boylan, McEntee, O'Rourke and Hayes.

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"They're not in with a shout at the moment and are not likely to be in with a shout for some time to come," he says ruefully.

Jimmy lives on the farm with his wife Sarah and children Kit (8), Millie (3) and eight-month-old Cass.

"Doing the balance sheet is always a problem but if you are getting a profit of €150 that's alright and you have to remember to leave a twist for the next fellow.

"Like every farmer I stumble from one year to the next and what plans you make will always depend on a bank loan. It's a vicous circle I suppose," explains Jimmy.

"But the weather is improving and the animals are thriving and the prices are good at the moment anyway."

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