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How this suckler farmer more than doubled his annual profits within 10 years

Jimmy Madigan’s Kilkenny farm had a gross margin of €540/ha in 2011. Since switching from rearing steers to keeping bulls, that figure has risen to €1,241/ha, thanks also to soil testing and improved fertility

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On the up: Jimmy Madigan on his 235ac suckler farm in Co Kilkenny. Photos: Niall Hurson

On the up: Jimmy Madigan on his 235ac suckler farm in Co Kilkenny. Photos: Niall Hurson

Bulls receive 900kg of meal and two bales of silage during their time on the farm

Bulls receive 900kg of meal and two bales of silage during their time on the farm

Calves are being weaned off the autumn herd

Calves are being weaned off the autumn herd

The farm's average 200 day weight for bulls was 312kg and for heifers 284kg

The farm's average 200 day weight for bulls was 312kg and for heifers 284kg

Attendees on the farm for the Irish Grassland Association Beef Event

Attendees on the farm for the Irish Grassland Association Beef Event

In late April, Jimmy reseeded a paddock with a seed mix of 10kg PRG, 2kg white clover and 2kg red clover per acre.

In late April, Jimmy reseeded a paddock with a seed mix of 10kg PRG, 2kg white clover and 2kg red clover per acre.

Teagasc research officer James Humphreys

Teagasc research officer James Humphreys

Home-bred bulls are finished alongside bought-in stores. Average slaughter age for bulls is 15.9 months at 428kg.

Home-bred bulls are finished alongside bought-in stores. Average slaughter age for bulls is 15.9 months at 428kg.

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On the up: Jimmy Madigan on his 235ac suckler farm in Co Kilkenny. Photos: Niall Hurson

Jimmy Madigan has more than doubled profits on his Kilkenny suckler farm over the last decade, by focusing on soil fertility and genetics.

He has 100 sucklers, 150 store lambs, 60 store bulls, 10ac of tillage and some forestry on his 235ac holding at Ballyhale, where he farms alongside his wife Annmarie and their four young children Hannah, Jim, Kate and Eddie.


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