Never-ending dry spell leaves tillage sector in crisis

Aisling Kiernan

Reporter:

Aisling Kiernan

Email:

aisling.kiernan@longfordleader.ie

Tillage

The enduring spell of dry weather has led to a serious shortage facing the crop industry

ICSA tillage chairman Gavin Carberry has called for the immediate reconvening of the Tillage Forum to address the looming crisis facing the sector.

“Vast quantities of spring cereals have been written off, with spring barley crops in the North East particularly badly hit,” he said before pointing out that while winter crops had fared a bit better, early ripening meant that yield was down.

“Normally we can expect each barley seed to shoot out five or six ears of barley, however, this year only one head sprung per seed due to the lack of rain.

“The late cold spring followed by a harsh drought has been a real double whammy for the tillage sector.

“In addition, ICSA understands there were 35,000 fewer acres of cereals sown across the country this year as opposed to last year and so it stands to reason that grain yields will be way down, as will the straw we could have expected per acre.”