Northern Ireland’s premier dairy competition, the Northern Ireland Show Associations’ (NISA), Dairy Cow Championship, will have a new sponsor for 2018, leading animal feed manufacturer John Thompson & Sons Limited.
Speaking at the launch of the 2018 championship, Thompsons’ Sales Director Gordon Donaldson said: “The NI Dairy Cow Championship is widely recognised as one of the finest competitions of its kind in the UK, and Thompsons are delighted to be involved.
“The competition has done a tremendous job of showcasing the NI dairy industry over the past 17 years, and making the championship the prestigious event that it is today. Our aim is to ensure the competition continues to go from strength to strength, and we look forward to working with NISA over the coming years to make this possible.”
The championship begins with the qualifying rounds at the regional shows.
This year there are nine qualifying shows; Ballymoney, Lurgan, Armagh, Ballymena, Newry, Omagh, Castlewellan, Saintfield, and Limavady. Bringing together the championship cows from each show, the 2018 final will be held at Clogher Valley Show, who will celebrate their 100th year with a special centenary show on Wednesday 25th July, at their showgrounds on the Knockmany Road, Augher.
With substantial prize money available for the top six cows in the final line-up, there is also a prize fund for the Top Exhibitor Bred animal and the cow with the Best Udder, not to mention a voucher for 10 bags of Thompsons’ feed to every cow exhibited at the final.
The championship is open to all breeds of dairy cows, whether pedigree or non-pedigree, but they must qualify in the Thompsons/NISA class at a qualifying show prior to the final - cows cannot qualify at Clogher Valley Show on the day of the final.
All breeders are encouraged to bring their cows to a qualifying show, where a maximum of two cows per exhibitor can be put forward for the final with the prospect of taking home this prestigious title.
Last year’s final had an excellent turnout of quality cows and was judged by Mrs Jenny Daw, from the Bluegrass Jersey Herd based in Hertfordshire.
Jenny awarded the Championship to Sandyford Honest Blizzard EX94, from the Ayrshire herd of John and Michael Hunter, Crumlin.
Thompsons would like to wish all exhibitors an enjoyable and successful show year.