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Wednesday 24 April 2019

Top dairy farmer named Teagasc Student of the Year

Kilkenny farmer Paul Bowden from Urlingford, Co Kilkenny, was announced as the Teagasc/FBD Insurance Student of the Year for 2018 at a ceremony in Dublin.
Kilkenny farmer Paul Bowden from Urlingford, Co Kilkenny, was announced as the Teagasc/FBD Insurance Student of the Year for 2018 at a ceremony in Dublin.

Tarah Sherlock

Kilkenny young farmer Paul Bowden was announced as the Teagasc/FBD Insurance Student of the Year for 2018.

Paul attended the Teagasc Kildalton Agricultural College where he completed the Teagasc Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agricultural (Dairy Herd Management) - with distinction.

Paul (25) farms on the family farm in Urlingford with his mother Eileen and father Denis.

"With the current economic climate it makes the most financial sense to be in dairy. The main challenges in the future for the dairy industry I think are Brexit, climate change and a shift in eating habits," said Paul.

"I was involved in various activities in college such as discussion groups and I went to New Zealand which I thoroughly enjoyed.”

Jennifer Aherne a young farmer from Cappamore, Co Limerick received the First Runner-Up Award.

She studied at the Teagasc Education Centre in Ennis and completed a Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farm Administration - with Distinction.

Speaking after receiving her award Jennifer said ‘We were originally a dairy farm however in 2008 we sold all and moved to beef. We now have a pedigree herd of Simmental cattle.

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"My passion is Simmental and beef cattle. 2017 was our best year with great sales and success with our bulls."

Jennifer added that the last few months have been tough with the late spring and drought last year and factory prices have also put pressure on farmers.

Agriculture Minister Michael Creed who presented the awards said: ‘These awards are an opportunity to showcase the talent of the modern farming workforce. I believe that people of your calibre will make an important contribution to the future of the country's biggest indigenous industry.’"

The awards are given to the top 16 graduates of Teagasc Level 6 agricultural programmes in 2018.

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