Inter-farm trading between tillage growers and livestock farms to be encouraged
Moves are being made to encourage inter-farm trading of forage between tillage growers and livestock farmers ahead of next winter.
Thomas Curran, farm structures specialist in Teagasc, said advisors will assist the efforts of all agricultural merchants matching farmers for forage needs in the coming days.
He pointed out that the Teagasc Maize Guide contained an inter-farm trading template which can be used as a guide to base an agreement for the purchase of maize or other crops.
"Trust plays a huge part where farmers are working together. Where there is trust and a written agreement which is discussed and signed up to by both parties, these arrangements are successful," said Mr Curran.
"Sourcing maize close to the farm can be an issue, therefore farmers further apart may need to work together.
"In these cases the parties involved may not know each other initially; therefore a leap of faith is necessary. This can be eased considerably where there is an intermediary to help facilitate the arrangement."
Farmers were first urged to complete a winter feed budget for the year ahead to identify the gaps.
Tom O'Dwyer, head of dairy knowledge transfer in Teagasc, said many farms now have extra livestock compared to other years.