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Waterford dairy herd opting for excellence over expansion

The Quealy brothers have spent 20 years building up their pure Friesian herd, and the milk production and beef quality results speak for themselves, reports Martin Ryan

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Focus on quality: Michael and Patrick Quealy on their dairy farm between Kilmeadan and Kilmacthomas in east Waterford

Focus on quality: Michael and Patrick Quealy on their dairy farm between Kilmeadan and Kilmacthomas in east Waterford

Focus on quality: Michael and Patrick Quealy on their dairy farm between Kilmeadan and Kilmacthomas in east Waterford

Quality over quantity has always been the Quealy brothers’ policy over the two decades they have spent building up their Grenan pure Friesian herd in east Waterford.

Michael and Patrick Quealy have rowed against the national trend of herd expansion. Their attitude is to focus on exceptional rather than average yielders. The merits of the pure Friesian are “definitely under-rated”, they say.

The Quealy farm is situated between Kilmeaden and Kilmacthomas, and their 160-cow herd is currently producing almost 450,000 litres of milk per day. The male offspring are returning an average 350kg carcase kill-out as steers under 30 months .