Farm Ireland

Monday 11 December 2017

Boucher addresses mart meeting

Bank of Ireland chief executive Richie Boucher swapped the boardroom for the grassroots last Thursday night when he addressed more than 600 farmers at an agri-business conference in Co Cork.

The main sales ring at Corrin Mart near Fermoy was packed to capacity and there were a further 150 people watching on big screens in the overflow room as Mr Boucher gave the keynote speech at the bank's '2020 Vision, Opportunities in the Dairy and Agri Food Business' conference.

"Bank of Ireland has the capital, the funding, the infrastructure and the strategic need to support Irish farmers," said Mr Boucher.

He also highlighted the importance of ensuring that expansion is from an efficient base: "Farmers cannot expect to sustainably expand out of inefficiency". he said.

Expansion was the theme for the second speaker Valerie Kingston, who, together with her husband Alan, owns Glenlien Farm foods.

She outlined how the couple had grown their business from selling at a local farmers' market to supplying the multiples with a range of dairy based products made with milk produced on the family farm.

Dairygold chief executive Jim Woulfe briefed the audience on the company's 'modular' expansion plans, which will allow Dairygold to cater for increased milk production from the supplier base as it comes on stream.

Mr Woulfe also looked at market opportunities for increased dairy production from Ireland and Europe.

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"Population growth and urbanisation in the large developing countries and Africa is where the demand growth is likely to come from," he said.

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