Following the launch of the new Teagasc website I have been able to publish the presentations from the National Goat Conference. The conference was an overwhelming success and was totally booked out almost a week before the event. There were attendees from all over the island of Ireland, the UK, continental Europe and beyond and it strongly demonstrated the commitment of the goat farming fraternity to the sector.
The morning session focussed on animal health and kid rearing and opened with one of the world's leading experts in goat health - John Matthews of the Goat Veterinary Society - giving a hugely educational presentation on health and diseases. This was followed by Gert Van Trierum of Denkavit in the Netherlands providing substantial detail and research on kid rearing. The session was closed by Theo de Waal of UCD who presented the results of a study into goat parasites in Ireland.
The second session was allotted entirely to Anne-Riet Boerenkamp of Insogoat in the Netherlands. Insogoat are a goat-specific research, development and consultancy organisation and the presentation covered primarily nutrition and husbandry.
The final conference session involved industry participants, and the products that are on the market. Noel Farrell of Golden Goat Farm provided a farmers’ perspective, while Elizabeth Bradley from Carlow Farmhouse Cheese discussed Irish artisan cheese production. Larry Maguire from the Galway Goat Farm outlined his experience and the challenges faced when setting up a small cheese business. Roger Sutton from Delamere Dairies in the UK presented on the market for Goat’s milk products.
The presentations are available on the Teagasc Goat page. You can find more details on Noel, Elizabeth and Larry at the links provided above.
Many thanks to both Glenisk and Makeway Ltd who provided sponsorship that facilitated bringing in internationally renowned authorities on goats.
Finally the huge success of the conference would not have been possible without the help and support of my Teagasc colleagues - particularly Fintan Phelan, Helen McNulty, Alison Maloney and Eric Donald.