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Growing popularity of CBD oil helping farmer find a market for hemp

Tonight’s series of Ear to the Ground features a segment on hemp farming, lambing 2020, and a climate-conscious beef farmer.

Hemp farming

The growing popularity of CBD oil is helping Wicklow farmer Ed Hanbidge find a market for his 40-acres of hemp this year. The hemp plant, a member of the cannabis family, is one of the most versatile crops and is used in clothing, building and food products, as well as in the valuable oil.

Ella McSweeney visits Ed as he struggles to harvest his hemp in West Wicklow, and follows the seeds to the processing plant where the CBD oil is extracted.

Spring lambing

Around 4 million lambs will be delivered this coming spring as Ireland’s 34,000 sheep farmers prepare for their busiest time of the year.

Darragh McCullough visits the Conway farm in East Galway as they lamb their prize-winning pedigree ewes. Liam Conway has been farming sheep all his life and his sons; Shane and Eric are happy to lend a hand at this time of year. The future of sheep farming in Ireland is discussed. 

Climate-conscious farming

Ireland is falling short of EU targets on greenhouse emissions. One young beef farmer and his partner believe that a tightly run ship and a willingness to try new things will make theirs a more environmentally friendly operation and a more profitable one. Helen Carroll meets Sean Roddy in Kildare.


Tune into Ear to the Ground on RTÉ One tonight (Thursday, January 23rd) at 7pm.

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