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The 2019 IFA National Hill Sheep Forum is taking place in Glendalough, Co. Wicklow on Thursday 5th September.

IFA National Hill Committee Chairman, Flor McCarthy, said that the Forum and farm visit will provide hill sheep farmers with a great opportunity to get the latest updates across a broad range of relevant issues from commonages and CAP policy to the latest on production and marketing of hill lamb.

It will address how hill farmers can capitalise on the unique environment they farm in, given the increased requirements being asked of farmers in the areas of climate action and biodiversity.

Flor McCarthy said IFA has organised a top-class range of speakers for the Forum. The event will kick off with a farm visit at 2.30pm to the farm of Denis Halpin, Hollywood, West Wicklow (assemble @ Hollywood Community Centre, Co. Wicklow).

At 6pm, the crowd will assemble in Glendalough Hotel, Glendalough, Co. Wicklow, A98 X9C1, for a meeting which will cover both hill sheep policy, production and marketing.

On policy, the meeting will be addressed by Joe Healy, IFA President, Department of Agriculture official Niall Ryan; IFA National Sheep Chairman, Sean Dennehy and Eileen McCloskey, Dept. of Environment and Rural Affairs N.I.

In addition, Michael Gottstein from Teagasc will provide the latest research and advice on hill sheep production and feeding and James Smith, Irish Country Meats will discuss the market prospects.

Flor McCarthy said all hill sheep farmers from across the country are very welcome to attend.

The full programme is available here.

IFA National Sheep Chairman Sean Dennehy said the Irish sheep sector is a very important farming enterprise with 35,000 farmers and an output of €390m.

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IFA National Sheep Chairman Sean Dennehy said the lamb trade has improved slightly this week with farmers getting €5.50/kg and top prices of €5.60/kg paid. He said lambs remain very scarce and farmers should negotiate hard on both price and weights.

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IFA National Hill Committee Chairman Flor McCarthy has encouraged farmers to apply for the National Walks Scheme, which will double the number of national walks and benefit up to 2,000 farmers.

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Speaking in the Cooley Mountains to coincide with the beginning of the lambing season, IFA National Sheep Chairman Sean Dennehy accused dog owners who allow their pets to roam without restriction, of acting in a grossly irresponsible, reckless and selfish manner.

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