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HomeBeefHelping farmers use the power of data to buy & sell animals
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Helping farmers use the power of data to buy & sell animals

Herdwatch has teamed up with DoneDeal Farming, to launch Verified by Herdwatch to help its members harness the power of data when buying or selling animals.

Farmers are no strangers to the challenges of buying and selling animals, which is essential to maintaining their livelihoods.

A recent survey of over 14,000 farmers, who use the Herdwatch farm management app, has revealed that the Covid-19 crisis has had a significant impact on farm businesses in Ireland.

This is despite farmers doing a tremendous job to keep the country fed over the last year. The survey, which received over 1,600 responses, highlighted some serious issues.

40% of Irish farmers revealed that their farm business was impacted by the Covid-19 crisis with farmers clearly identifying Covid-19 restrictions, which hampered the buying and selling of animals and poor factory prices as being major drivers of this.

Livestock marts

To help at the height of the first lockdown, Herdwatch launched a free Covid Cattle Exchange to connect farmers who needed to sell animals with farmers who wanted to buy animals, at a time when a lot of marts had to close their doors and then re-opened under restriction, meaning that a lot of farmers did not have an outlet to sell or buy cattle at one of the busiest periods of the year.

The results from this year’s survey showed just how relevant and important marts are as part of the rural fabric of Ireland with 79% of Herdwatch members using marts to sell animals, and this number has stayed the same in 2021 as last year.

And that was not the first time Herdwatch pulled out all the stops to help Irish farmers. Back in 2018, during the fodder crisis, hundreds of Herdwatch members reached out to help each other via the free Herdwatch, Fodder Exchange, with offers of fodder for sale to other farmers at a time of need.

Verified by Herdwatch, buy cattle online

The survey also revealed the worst-kept secret in the world: farmers love DoneDeal.

DoneDeal’s farming section has grown massively over the years and saves farmers valuable time by offering the largest choice of farm machinery and livestock in Ireland for farm to farm trade. To prove that point, 76% of Herdwatch members said they use DoneDeal.

Of course, marts are and will remain a key part of the buying and selling of livestock.

However, according to the Herdwatch survey, 57% of farmers are selling livestock direct to other farms and 76% of farmers buying animals directly from other farms.

Verified by Herdwatch

So it is no surprise that Herdwatch has partnered with DoneDeal to launch another new service to help farmers simplify their ability to sell animals online and help potential buyers make better decisions.

The new service, called Verified by Herdwatch is a decision support tool that lets farmers share verified animal information, including age, breed, residency count and more, with other farmers on the DoneDeal platform.

Verified by Herdwatch

Sharing this key animal information with other farmers will help increase the value of animals by using data to prove their history and help buyers simplify their purchasing decision, without having to ask for more information or wasting time going to see animals without the facts or knowing what they are really going to see.

How will it work? 

The new service mirrors the successful greenlight history check on DoneDeal, which gives car buyers reliable, real-time information to save them from expensive headaches down the road.

With thousands of listings on the DoneDeal website, it also helps sellers stand out from the crowd, with a Greenlight listing getting over four times more views than a standard ad.

And the new ‘Verified by Herdwatch’ on DoneDeal service is going to replicate that success for farmers. 72% of sellers in the Herdwatch survey said that sharing more animal information with prospective buyers could increase the sale price of the animals and 83% of buyers saying they would be more likely to buy animals where they get the animal information including age, breed, residency count, TB and QA status, etc before deciding whether to make a purchase.

The service is very easy for farmers to use; they simply select the animals they want to sell in the Herdwatch farm management app, and create a unique code that is entered into DoneDeal when creating an ad.

Once this code is entered, the animal information from Herdwatch is automatically added to the ad on DoneDeal, painting a complete and accurate picture of the animals for prospective buyers.

And to make it easy for buyers to find the ‘Verified by Herdwatch’ ads amongst thousands of livestock listings on DoneDeal, all of these ads will have a ‘Verified by Herdwatch’ badge like the one above.

Over 250,000 agri buyers 

Rob Hume, General Manager of DoneDeal, commented: “Our farming section on DoneDeal is where farmers do business in Ireland.”

“Over 255,000 agri buyers visit our farming section every month, making DoneDeal the clear number 1 online livestock marketplace in the country, helping to facilitate more sales than any other platform.”

“From this vantage point, we can see that ads with full livestock details supported by Herdwatch generate over 50% more interest from buyers, which turns into higher prices when it comes to the sale.”

“It’s win-win for our farmers; verifying your stock is good for the buyer, and ultimately, it’s great for the final value of the sale.”

Fabien Peyaud, CEO and co-founder of Herdwatch added: “Farmers are clearly rocketing into the future with their adoption of technology and using data to power everyday decisions, and we are very excited to help provide the fuel to drive them on.”

”We are really proud of the work we do here in Herdwatch, and this partnership with DoneDeal will help thousands of farmers harness the power of their data to increase the value of their animals and make buyers’ lives much easier going forward.”

More information 

To find out more information, click here or download the Herdwatch farm management app today.


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