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John Heney: Why a 24-month rule would destroy Irish beef’s global reputation

Finishing Friesian steers off-grass at 24 months would be challenging: not only would it be environmentally damaging, it would also be extremely inhumane

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Nutritious: John Heney says his natural swaths, high in biodiversity, are still well capable of fattening beef cattle

Nutritious: John Heney says his natural swaths, high in biodiversity, are still well capable of fattening beef cattle

A bee and a butterfly on John's farm in the summer, underlining the biodiversity on his holding

A bee and a butterfly on John's farm in the summer, underlining the biodiversity on his holding

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Nutritious: John Heney says his natural swaths, high in biodiversity, are still well capable of fattening beef cattle

Looking back at 2021, it has been quite a strange year. Even though there was a good cover of grass on my paddocks in early February, because of the cold weather it was late April before I left the last of my cattle out.

My worries continued with the poor early summer growth, which led to ongoing concerns about thrive. The broken weather in May also meant my first-cut silage had to be cut and picked up on the same day hopefully it will turn out OK.


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