Smart Farming

Smart Farming: Case Study

Joe Egan, Sheep & Tillage Farmer

Joe is a sheep and tillage farmer from Co. Tipperary. He can achieve potential savings of over €7,000 if he were to implement the recommended actions.

“Fresh eyes give perspective, fresh ideas and drives the farmer to change” 

Joe Egan, 2021 Smart Farming Participant

Soil Fertility 

Since taking part in the Smart Farming programme Joe has implemented a liming programme to address sub optimal pH levels in his soils. Maintaining the optimal soil pH results in better soil nutrient recycling and release.

Joe has also implemented a nutrient management plan (NMP) to target low P and K indices. NMPs balance nutrient inputs with crop requirements and reduce nutrient losses.

These actions have allowed Joe to target nutrients where they are needed, reducing his costs and environmental impact.


Joe was advised that restricting water intake could restrict weight gain in store lambs taking them longer to achieve finished weights.

Joe was also advised to install a UV light treatment to his private well to improve the water quality.


Joe was advised to cut silage earlier in the year to increase the DMD% of his silage.

Feeding sheep higher quality silage has reduced his feed costs as low-quality silage needed to be supplemented using concentrates.


32% of the savings identified on Joe’s farm could be achieved by switching energy provider to get the best deal and the cheapest rate for electricity annually.

Smart Farming is a voluntary resource efficiency programme, run by the Irish Farmers’ Association in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency.

For more information on the Smart Farming programme visit

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