Farm Ireland

Monday 26 February 2018

Dairy farmers to shake up land markets with drive for out-farms

Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

Dairy farmers are set to shake up the land market this spring in a drive to buy or lease out-farms in preparation for expansion next year.

Kilkenny auctioneer Joseph Coogan said he was getting hourly calls from dairy farmers looking for land located within striking distance of their home.

"The man moving from 80 cows to 120 will want to use all the land in the home place for grazing, so these guys will be looking for medium-sized out-farms on long-term lease or to buy to supply fodder and grazing for replacement stock and drystock," he said.

Mr Coogan said he was convinced the elimination of quotas was going to make a huge difference to the land market.

"I know of 10 new milking parlours being built here in north Kilkenny and I'm sure the same is true in the south of the county and further afield," he said.

Cork-based agricultural consultant Mike Brady agreed that dairy farmers would be more active in the land market this spring. "Dairy farmers with expansion plans are looking to lease, but also some wish to buy out-farms for rearing young stock. Land currently used on the grazing block by heifers will be filled with cows, hence the need," he said.

Mr Brady said that buildings on such holdings are a major attraction as it saves the capital cost of constructing additional housing and slurry storage.

He also said that larger profitable dairy farmers are buying land through limited companies for tax purposes.

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Irish Independent