Alfie and Marion Hanbidge hosted the Irish Aubrac Breeders Society event at their farm in September 2014, in Stratford on Slaney which was attended by many farmers from the locality but also as far away as Counties Clare and Kilkenny.
Chief Scorer at the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation Basil Bothwell demonstrated the different qualities needed in the modern beef animal, especially due to rapidly changing market requirements.
He was very insistent that the present suckler dam needs to have enough milk to feed her calf well and thereby cutting out the need for expensive meal feeding.
Kim McCall ,Calverstown, Co. Kildare, from the Calverstown Aubrac Herd, who is one of the original importers of the breed spoke about the history and background of the breed. The McCall’s first imported Aubracs into Ireland in 1996 and have been breeding Aubracs ever since.
The challenges of the the beef market was discussed by Eamon Moules of Slaney Meats, Bunclody, Co. Wexford.
One of the topics raised here was the lower carcase weight requirements of the trade at the moment and the importance of sufficient fat cover in the continental animal.
Mr. Moules stressed that the Aubrac breed could meet these requirements .
‘The livestock on show at Alfie and Marion Hanbidge’s farm were of a very high and consistent quality and were a great credit to them and their family,’ said Ernest Mackey, Council Committee Member of the Irish Aubrac Breeders Society.
Since the farm walk, several Aubrac heifers and steers have been slaughtered from the farm of Alfie and Marion.
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