Cows from Armagh, Cork, Down, Wexford and Monaghan, were among the winners at the €13,000 Diageo Baileys Champion Dairy Cow Competition 2023 at the 80th-anniversary of Virginia Agricultural Show.
She also secured the protein award, which is presented to the animal exhibited in the Diageo Baileys All-Ireland Cow competition with the highest recorded yield of protein. Protein is a highly valuable component of overall milk solids yield in terms of both volume (kgs) and percentage (%) which is reflected in product mix at milk processor level.
Dairy markets internationally have a positive weighting on milk protein and this emphasis is reflected in milk pricing structure at farm level.
Meanwhile, Bawnmore Pepper Almeric owned by Bryan and John O’Connor from County Cork was declared reserve champion and also best exhibitor bred.
This is awarded to the owner(s) of the highest placed Diageo Baileys All Ireland Cow who both owns and also bred the animal and its dam.
She was born in April 2019, and is out of Delaberge Pepper and Congowes Sid Almeric 2 EX95.
Honourable Mention went to last year’s overall winner, Hilltara Undenied Apple, owned by Sam and John McCormick from County Down.
Figures as follows:
- Milk solids – 9686;
- Fat and protein – 688;
- Protein % – 3.18%.
Best Heifer in Milk
Other prizes were awarded in specialist categories. These included Best Heifer in Milk which was won by February 2021 born, Lambda Twizzle, by Farnear Delta Lambda and Hallow Solomon Twizzle, owned by Gary and Izzy Jones from County Wexford.
This is presented to the highest placed Diageo Baileys All Ireland Heifer in milk.
The Best Junior Cow was Hallow Diamondback Twizzle 3, owned by Philip and Linda Jones, also from County Wexford. She was born in February 2020 and is by Mr D Apple Diamondback and Hallow Solomon Twizzle EX91, making her a half-sister to the Heifer-in-Milk 2023.
This is awarded to the highest placed Diageo Baileys All Ireland Junior Cow. A junior cow is in her second lactation and is also born after September 1st, 2019.
Best EBI Award
The Best EBI Award went to Monamore Lustrees Haniko owned by Patrick Colton, Karl Colton and David Buchanan, from County Monaghan.
She was bred by Tom Kelly, was born in September 2020 and is by Siemers Lambda and HanikoCullies Real Seal Lustre EX91.
This award was presented in recognition of the highest Economic Breeding Index (EBI) animal exhibited at the Diageo Baileys Champion Cow competition.
The EBI is Ireland’s national cattle breeding index for dairy animals ranking on-farm performance across milk solids production, fertility, health, and longevity credentials.
EBI is recognized as a key metric to help meet national greenhouse gas emissions obligations.
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