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Melody hits high note as Clare Macra Young Farmer of the Year

IT was music to the ears of Bunratty farmer Joe Melody to discover that he has been named Clare Macra Young Farmer of the Year. Having come on top at the county rounds, Joe will now go on to represent Clare in the 2020 Macra na Feirme FBD Young Farmer of the Year competition. Joe runs both a dairy and beef enterprise. The Clare native milks a herd of 139 Holstein-cross British Friesian cows, along with a pedigree herd of Charolais and Limousin cows. In 2015, Joe was milking 75 cows and since then have expanded and are now milking 139 cows; however, the hope is to go further again and milk around 160-170 cows in the near future. Explaining the expansion of the dairy enterprise over the last few years, Joe said, “We bought a lot of breeding stock, from a local farmer, such as in-calf cows and heifers, as well as breeding our own replacements. At the moment, …

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