At a special event in Cillín Hill, Dublin Road, Kilkenny on Tuesday, Justin McCarthy of the Irish Farmers Journal, officially launched the Cillín Farm Advisory Group (CFAG) – a “one-stop-shop” for advice for the agricultural sector and farm families in the South East.
The team is made up of farm advisors who between them have in excess of 100 years experience in providing agricultural advice which is crucial to the success of this unique initiative. The directors of the new group are Paddy Bruton, Kilkenny; Pat Minnock, Carlow and Michael Tennyson, Inistioge. The headquarters of the new Group is located in Cillín Hill, the centre of farming business in the South East.
The initiative consists of a team of 20 professionals with two new appointments. It brings together “Associate Specialists” to cover all farming enterprises and advice to the wider agricultural industry including, among others, solicitors, accountants, auctioneers, the merchant trade, banks and co-ops.
Speaking at the launch, Justin McCarthy, Irish Farmers Journal said it was essential that farmers had access to independent advisory services that will help them boost the profitability of their business. “The transfer of knowledge and best practice techniques from research centres to inside the farm gate will be essential to ensuring the industry successfully charts its way through the challenges of CAP reform and indeed the abolition of milk quotas in 2015. I would like to wish CFAG group all the very best into the future and congratulate the directors for having the foresight to respond to the changing needs of Irish farmers,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of the Directors of Cillín Farm Advisory Group (CFAG), Pat Minnock said: “We are conscious of the ever increasing demands by farmers and the agricultural industry for quality agricultural advice especially in relation to the likely impacts of the changes to the CAP and also in relation to reaching targets for dairy, beef, sheep, tillage, forestry and bio-energy sectors as set out in Food Harvest 2020.
“This initiative and the location allows us to be readily available to all farmers, as a “one-stop-shop” for all agricultural enquiries. We believe that the large base of farmers currently using Cillín Hill will benefit enormously from our accessibility, our experience and our knowledge.
“We are confident that Cillín Farm Advisory Group can improve farm incomes while also developing a unique source of Agricultural advice and up to date support for the more specialised and progressive farmers. Independent commercially focused agricultural advice was never more important and will help farmers to make their own decisions and plans especially over the next 12 months,” he said.
Other speakers included Michael Parsons, Chairman, Kilkenny Mart and JJ Kavanagh, existing client and National Treasurer of the IFA. Both men welcomed the initiative and complimented the directors on bringing together the expert advisory group at a crucial decision time for farm families and the agri sector as a whole. To mark the official launch, Marguerite Tennyson, a member of the CFAG advisory team, made a spresentation to Justin McCarthy.