My husband and I used Noel Gowen, Grasstec to source in-calf heifers from Ireland in the autumn of 2012. Noel was very accommodating to our needs, meeting us at Dublin airport and driving us around the country to view the heifers. We were able to visit several farms and select from a large head of cattle.
We finally decided on 48 mainly Friesian x Jersey heifers from three different farms. We did not feel under pressure to purchase and Noel’s advice was unbiased and based on what would suit our system.
As a vet I am aware of the potential risks associated with buying in stock and wanted to minimize this risk as much as possible. The heifers we bought had all tested free from BVD and we have since tag tested their daughters which have also all proved negative.
The heifers settled well, calving with very little trouble through February and March, as expected. We are very pleased with the heifers, honest, healthy and quiet; we would definitely use Grasstec again if purchasing more stock from Ireland.
We have been using Grasstec’s mapping service for nearly 10 years and see the maps as a very important part of planning and developing any sort of new farm layout.
I got great peace of mind from knowing that we have a plan that can work
Using Grasstec to survey the existing farmyard and draw up options for future developments gave us great clarity on how the pieces of the jigsaw would fit. It also is a lot easier to change things before the first load of concrete arrives.
Using Grasstec to measure exact grass acres has been an invaluable tool on the farm. A no brainer when it comes to measuring grass week on week.
For silage fields u can go to your contractor with exact information on acres cut. Setting up your farm in terms of new paddocks & roadways etc. has also been invaluable. The list goes on.
It took me a while to get my idea’s out of my head and getting them on to the map(a few maps later!!) and all the extra ones that Grasstec helped me with.
The changes to the paddock layout and relocating the main roadway are a big help to the future development of the farm as a grassing platform. When I purchased a new piece of land there no problems with adding it to the map.
Changing some of the paddocks to more practical sizes and helping to maximize the grassing potential of the wetter parts by adding better access and more entry points to these fields and paddocks. Adding the under pass and the changes to the roadways joining onto it. Just to mention a few…
“People will look at the map and see just a map but when I look at the map I see exactly what I wanted and more when mapping Westcourt farm”
Thanks again to you and your team at Grasstec.
Efficient grassland management has been shown to be one of the cornerstones of profitable grass based cattle production systems. Efficiency goes hand in hand with accuracy.
Therefore knowing the exact size of paddocks is of paramount importance when grass budgeting. This year Grasstec mapped our grazing platform. Now we can be confident that we are estimating grass allocation with minimal margin of error.
The variations in weather experienced recently have highlighted the importance of adequate grazing infrastructure. Specifically, a good road network is required to maximise the amount of grazed grass in the diet of the milking cows, during wet weather conditions. The drought of summer 2013 has really shown the importance of adequate water infrastructure. Grasstec also designed our roadway and loop water systems.
The upfront cost of mapping services may be off-putting to many farmers. However, we feel that this cost will be recouped many times over by accurate grassland assessment, leading to increased animal performance, production and most important profitability.
I recently sold Heifers through Grasstec and was extremely pleased with their efficient service. They knew exactly what they were looking for.
They were also the only exporters who visited the farm and examined the cows that the heifers were bred off of. Noel Gowen was highly professional in the service he provided to me and I am sure anybody looking to source stock, would be more than happy with their service.
We were very happy with the service Grasstec provided, through the two consignments of in calf heifers they imported for us. Their commitment and knowledge to select the best stock made the process easier for inexperienced buyers. The fertility of the stock sourced is excellent.
100% of them went back in-calf, with 95% in-calf in the first 6 weeks and the remaining 5% within 9 weeks. All the stock were sourced by Grasstec and haulage organised helping get well priced quality stock hassle free and with no problems. Would recommend their services to other buyers.
We have been very impressed with the value and stock sourced through Grasstec. We were taken to some good farms with stock to match, all the animals were exactly what we wanted to see. There was no pressure to buy or make a decision straight away.
The animals all came with good records and arrived in very good condition after a long journey. The costs were fully explained and made clear from the start meaning there was no hidden surprises. We will certainly deal with Grasstec again in the future.
Noel’s input over the last 3 seasons has seen our grass management improve dramatically. The whole team is now more focussed and better able to predict feed surplus or deficeit and take appropriate action.
Proper autumn and spring budgets were a ‘life saver’ over the last year allowing our cows to be out eating grass instead of being inside on expensive meal and scarce silage.
Noel has challenged us in all areas of the farm’s management and has allowed us build a robust future proof business. I would have no problem recommending his services to anyone.
I used Grasstec to map the farm in spring 2014 when I was converting the farm to dairying. At that stage the farm was laid out in 1ha paddocks for grazing multiple groups of beef cattle. Having the farm mapped gave me a clearer picture of the area in each field and I was surprised to find that there was 10% of my farm under lane ways, ditches and trenches. It meant I could now budget better on grass allocations and know exactly the area in a field when I was paying contractors “by the acre”.
In October 2015 I purchased 64 acres joining my milking platform and got this mapped by Grasstec to help know the exact area in each field. We also redesigned all the paddocks on the existing platform to now incorporate the additional new ground. The redesigned paddocks are now 4ha where possible and these now allow for 36 hour grazing for 240 cows at a cover of 1500kgs. By having the Farm mapped we were able to put the new roadways that were required in the most suitable place to allow the most efficient use of the farm.
Having the farm mapped gives me great control over my farm and allows visitors contractors and students on the farm understand the farm layout and paddock numbers and avoid and misunderstandings.
“As a new entrant to dairying I have found Grasstec’s Livestock sourcing service a breath of fresh air, with such a wide network of farmers they have helped me find the very best animals available. I particularly like the fact that they bring me to meet the seller in person and prices are then discussed openly. This is my second year using their service as I know and trust the team!”
“ I recently engaged Grasstec Livestock services. They were very professional in the approach of firstly placing a valuation on the herd. I got great advice and with the minimum fuss I had customers viewing the herd. Within a very short time Grasstec brokered a deal. They handled the administration and logistics in a transparent manner and I received payment on the day the animals were leaving. The service this company offers is a revelation in terms of efficiency!”
I was very happy with the service provided by Noel and his team at Grasstec who assisted me with a full herd sale. Noel provided an ideal customer when selling my cows and heifers. All paperwork, transport and finance was provided hassle free.
We bought in calf heifers through Grasstec and we were very impressed with the quality of stock, there was no pressure to buy on the day and you were shown a large variety of stock to view.
We were looking for high EBI stock and Grasstec sourced them for us 3 of them have calved and we are very pleased with them and rest are springing down as nice heifers we would highly recommend Grasstec.
I sold milking cows through Grasstec- Pat brought a customer who was looking for the exact stock I had. The deal was done on the same day which saved me a lot of time and effort. Money was in my account prior to the cattle moving. I look forward to selling stock through Grasstec again.
Would strongly recommend Grasstec for sourcing quality replacement dairy stock. I dealt with Norman Bateman and found him to be a great help. He knew exactly what I was looking for and within a very short period of time had sourced high ebi maiden heifers for me. Would strongly recommend Norman as he is a farmer himself so he understands the needs of each individual. Fierce friendly guy also.
We are very happy with the cattle sourced by Grasstec and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend their services. The process of sourcing, purchasing and delivery was managed exceptionally well. Cows performed great and were very fertile, we achieved 5.5% empty in 12 weeks from a herd that comprised of only 1st calvers.
I sold stock through Grasstec and was delighted with the customer Pat brought to me, there was no time wasting and I got a fair price and all the money was in my account before the animals moved, I look forward to dealing with Grasstec again.
I am happy to recommend the service provided by Bertie Troy and his colleagues in Grasstec. I used his service initially to enlarge my paddock sizes and optimise the layout of lanes and water supply, saving me money in installation costs. When designing paddock layouts it is useful to be able to “see” the different options.
Bertie’s staff are always willing to discuss and make changes if necessary. Maps are clear and easy to follow. I have recently re-used his service to optimise the layout of additional paddocks on adjoining land.
Over the years I have had many student work on my farm. Being able to give a copy of the map has been an added benefit. This makes it very easy to explain to them what needs to be done where or where cows are to be moved to next. As the student progress it allows them to make judgements in relation the amounts of fertilizer to spread etc.
I have also had a copy of the map uploaded to IFC Agrinet Grass Measuring system which enables a visual view of grass growth.