23Nov - Page 1



FARM RTV
400
WEEK
WIN KUBOTA
Indoor Derby
League underway
at Connell Hill
BEST OF BREED AND A REALLY GOOD READ
SEE INSIDE
NOVEMBER 23 2017 www.farmweek.com PRICE £1.30 (€2)
See page 94
Reaping the benefits of
farmer-funded research
REPORT
By TERRI LEONARD
t.leonard@farmweek.com
T
WENTY years of farmerfunded research and
innovation in Northern
Ireland is being lauded this
week for helping deliver
a more sustainable, profitable and
competitive ruminant livestock sector.
Since its inception in 1997, AgriSearch has
delivered research valued at over £170 million
to the Province’s dairy, beef and sheep
sectors through 145 projects funded from less
than £8m in farmer levy payments.
The research and development
organisation, which celebrated its 20th
anniversary at a special event in Belfast
yesterday (Wednesday), has hailed this
achievement as “excellent value for money”
for local farmers.
Over the past two decades, it has
successfully evolved from a “back seat”
co-funder of research, to a lead driver of
projects, providing ruminant livestock
farmers with a voice in the development of
their sector.
To mark its 20th anniversary, AgriSearch
has commissioned a publication in which
some of the brightest minds in the sector
reflect on what two decades of co-funded
research has achieved – and pinpoint the
challenges and opportunities which may lie
ahead in the next 20 years.
Speaking at the event, AgriSearch chairman
Michael Bell described the organisation’s
achievements as “a substantial return on
investment and a tremendous innovation
dividend”.
He said: “In its first 20 years AgriSearch has
committed £7.7 million of farmer levy funds
towards 145 projects, with a total cost of £35
million.
“Based on a conservative five to 10 per cent
uptake rate, the value of this research to the
Northern Ireland ruminant livestock sector is
estimated to be at least £170 million. By any
Turn to page 4
Victoria and her heifer calf
are just picture perfect!
AT THE FAIR: Victoria Johnston, from Clogher,
with her Blonde heifer calf at the Pedigree Calf Fair
at the King’s Hall Complex, Balmoral, on Saturday.
Report and pictures – See pages 32-35
Picture: Cliff Donaldson

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