There is huge scope to up our game on silage quality
After spending eight days in China visiting existing and developing beef units, it was great to get back home to Irish food, Irish weather and to see the Louth footballers playing in Croke Park (although the less said about the result, the better).
I spent most of my time in the provinces of Xingiang, Gansu and Qinghai.
For centuries, these were the pastoral regions of China, but with population migration away from rural communities to large urban centres the traditional methods of pasture based beef and lamb production are disappearing rapidly.
The development of large scale, intensive beef units is now widespread and strong levels of financial backing from local government, private investors and investment banks is common.
Despite the mind-blowing levels of investment in infrastructure, imported livestock and machinery, there is a dearth of knowledge in production systems and animal husbandry - something we take for granted here in Ireland.
In the short space of time that I was away, the Irish countryside transformed. Flying into Dublin airport, the green fields were a very welcoming sight.
The target of mid-May silage harvest will be more than met on many farms this year.
In the latter part of last week, I tested numerous fresh grass samples prior to mowing as an ensilability test.