UFU celebrates top silage makers of 2023

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This week, the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) recognised Northern Ireland’s (NI) top silage makers of 2023 as the UFU and sponsors United Feeds, hosted their annual silage competition awards ceremony in the Dunsilly Hotel, Co. Antrim.

Robert Macauley of Mid Down group (dairy), Robert and Ross Bradley of North East Derry group (beef and sheep), Sean and Ciaran McNaughton of North Antrim group (big bale) and Clifton and Jonathan Dickson of North East Armagh group (alternative forage) took top honours in the competition, which saw a record number of entries from farmers.

Commenting, UFU deputy president, John McLenaghan, said: “The UFU’s annual silage competition has always encouraged farmers to produce silage to exceptional levels and once again, this year’s competition entries were to the highest standard. We were especially encouraged by the number of members entering the competition for the first time. Good silage making has always been a key element of farming in Northern Ireland, where we rely heavily on our ability to grow forage for our livestock sector, but also with increases to input costs, it’s more important now than ever.

“We would like to extend our thanks to the United Feeds’ advisory team, CAFRE, UFU group managers and most importantly our farmers, for continuing to support the competition.”

Clarence Calderwood United Feeds event sponsor, Elizabeth Calvin CAFRE NI Judge, Derek Lough UFU membership director.  (Pic: UFU)Clarence Calderwood United Feeds event sponsor, Elizabeth Calvin CAFRE NI Judge, Derek Lough UFU membership director.  (Pic: UFU)
Clarence Calderwood United Feeds event sponsor, Elizabeth Calvin CAFRE NI Judge, Derek Lough UFU membership director. (Pic: UFU)

Clarence Calderwood, United Feeds, added: “We are delighted to continue our support of the annual silage competition. High quality forage is a key element on all ruminant farms and its importance has never been higher as we strive to maximise milk or meat from forage in order to meet forthcoming sustainability objectives. Congratulations to the winners of this year’s competition who come from right across the province and have exceptionally good forages. We were delighted with the number of entries again this year and thank the UFU for organising the competition.”

The full list of winners is:

Dairy

1st Robert Macauley, Mid Down group;

Back row (l-r): Sean Roddy United Feeds, John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (1st place winner), Thomas Jamison (3rd place winner). Front row (l-r): Jonny Hutchinson (2nd place winner), Clifton Dickson (1st place winner), Andrew Jamison (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)Back row (l-r): Sean Roddy United Feeds, John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (1st place winner), Thomas Jamison (3rd place winner). Front row (l-r): Jonny Hutchinson (2nd place winner), Clifton Dickson (1st place winner), Andrew Jamison (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)
Back row (l-r): Sean Roddy United Feeds, John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (1st place winner), Thomas Jamison (3rd place winner). Front row (l-r): Jonny Hutchinson (2nd place winner), Clifton Dickson (1st place winner), Andrew Jamison (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)

2nd D and A Wallace, South Antrim group;

3rd Beattie and Reggie Lilburn, Lagan group.

Beef and sheep

1st Robert and Ross Bradley, North East Derry group;

Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Peter Speir United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Damien Gilmore (2nd place winner), Ciaran McNaughton (1st place winner), David Hylands (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Peter Speir United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Damien Gilmore (2nd place winner), Ciaran McNaughton (1st place winner), David Hylands (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)
Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Peter Speir United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Damien Gilmore (2nd place winner), Ciaran McNaughton (1st place winner), David Hylands (3rd place winner). (Pic: UFU)

2nd Billy and John Martin, Ards group;

3rd Linton Brothers, Mid Antrim group.

Alternative forage

1st Clifton and Jonathan Dickson, North East Armagh group;

Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (alternative forage), Clarence Calderwood United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Robert Bradley (beef/sheep), Clifton Dickson (alternative forage), Ciaran McNaughton (round bale), missing Robert Macauley (dairy). (Pic: UFU)Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (alternative forage), Clarence Calderwood United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Robert Bradley (beef/sheep), Clifton Dickson (alternative forage), Ciaran McNaughton (round bale), missing Robert Macauley (dairy). (Pic: UFU)
Back row (l-r): John McLenaghan UFU deputy president, Jonathan Dickson (alternative forage), Clarence Calderwood United Feeds. Front row (l-r): Robert Bradley (beef/sheep), Clifton Dickson (alternative forage), Ciaran McNaughton (round bale), missing Robert Macauley (dairy). (Pic: UFU)

2nd Jonny Hutchinson, South Londonderry group;

3rd Andrew and Thomas Jamison, North Antrim group.

Bales

1st Sean and Ciaran McNaughton, North Antrim group;

2nd G R Gilmore and Son, Ards group;

3rd David Hylands, North West Derry group.

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