IFAs Grain Committee has been involved in recent weeks in supporting Boortmalt Ireland in a feasibility study to find new areas where low protein malting barley could be grown.
The Company is doing the study to support the building of a new plant on its existing site in Kildare to produce an extra 40,000 tons of malt for the expanding distilling industry. This would entail the contracting of an additional 45/50,000 tons of sub 8.8% protein malting barley from farmers.
Along with the existing areas of Wexford, Carlow, Kildare, Wicklow and Laois, the study is looking at areas in Dublin, Louth, Meath, Offaly, Tipperary, Cork and Waterford. This would be the first expansion in malting capacity in Ireland in over 50 years.
A final decision could be made by the end of the year and if positive would bring the total purchases of malting barley up close to 200,000 tonnes.