Sinéad Moran and Mick McGrath own a micro-dairy with a herd of traditional breed cows on 47-acres of high nature value farmland in Co. Mayo where they sell raw organic milk direct to consumers.
They are passionate about conserving the species-rich grass, mature trees and both retaining and enhancing biodiversity that is found on their farm.
The land has been in Mick’s family for years and was never farmed intensively. The ground has not been re-seeded, overstocked, fields have not been widened, or hedges removed.
The land has an old orchard, an old cottage, granary and mature trees dominate all but a few boundaries. This landscape relies on grazing animals and they manage it in a way that both conserves and preserves the land’s biodiversity through holistic grazing while still producing nutrient-rich food for direct sale to the local community. “
“Our rich yellow butter is down to both the traditional breeds we use but also the diversity they eat. If anyone wants to something to farm better for nature, then definitely include more diversity both in the animals and what they eat”.
Sinéad is also co-director at Foodture – an online group to support local producers across Ireland. She is passionate about environmental issues and climate activism, and has opened up her farm as a place of educating others on what they can do to mitigate climate change.
They are a small, sustainable enterprise that shows diversity and does not compromise nature.
Farming for Nature
Now in its third year, Farming For Nature was set up with an aim to source, share and celebrate the stories of farmers across Ireland who manage their land in a way that sustains nature, while providing a livelihood for their family.
Nominations are sought annually from a broad panel of environmental experts and through a rigorous system of interviews, farm visits and assessments by a panel of judges, 16 of these farmers were selected as ambassadors in 2020.
Of these, 8 ambassadors have been chosen to represent a cross-section of the farming community during September and October.
They will be featured at the Burren Winterage Weekend at the end of October when the winner of the public vote will also be announced.
The Farming for Nature Awards are sponsored by Bord Bia and supported by a wide range of farming and conservation interests including the Dept of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and the National Rural Network.
The deadline for 2020 voting is midnight Friday, October 23rd, 2020 – To vote or to obtain any further information, click here.