Women in Ag Profiles
In this article, That’s Farming previews some of our most popular Women in Ag features in 2022.
That’s Farming editor, Catherina Cunnane, sat down with Karen Moynihan, a Co Kerry-based suckler farmer and area manager for ALDI Ireland, who has taken TikTok by storm with her Massey 135.
She told us: “I started working on the farm three years ago and have a full-time job, so the farm is only part-time.”
“I moved back home with work and built a house and felt it was only natural that I worked on the farm.”
“My dad had an accident eight years ago, which has left him paralysed from the chest down. Neighbours had been helping on the farm for a few years to keep it going, and I just decided to give it a go when I moved back.”
“When I first started, I thought I would just be bringing in bales and feeding throughout the winter, but it has quickly progressed from there.”
You can read her full article via this link.
Our resident editor, Catherina Cunnane, also spoke to Tiegan Dunne, an ag student at Gurteen Agricultural College from Co Laois.
She told us: “My father stopped farming a few years ago after my grandfather died to focus on construction.”
“When I was 17, I started to work for my father and uncle in construction during the summer and midterm holidays. I worked on sites as a groundworker and machinery, dumper, and digger operator.”
“I have always loved working with my father, and I often got days off school to help him. Ever since I was young, I have always loved animals, and I always wanted to get back into farming.”
“I completed my healthcare course one week before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. However, I never went any further with it, so I stayed home to help my father in construction and later enrolled at Gurteen Agricultural College.”
Read her story.
Freelance contributor, Conor Halpin, captured Karen O’Donoghue’s life as a full-time chartered accountant and an operator in her family’s agricultural contracting business, O’Donoghue Agri.
She told him:
“My two brothers are much older than me. I saw them driving first, and I was always out with them when I was younger.”
“I got my licence when I was 16, and I have been working with my father every summer since.”
“My sister and I mostly help during the summer, but we could be on call for weekends.”
Read this article.
Ciara Flavin, one of the country’s only qualified female butchers, shared her story with our editor.
Her father, Jim, set up their family-run butchery business over 26 years ago, and she is the second-generation butcher in the family.
From watching her father throughout the years and gaining lots of knowledge from him, she was “always eager to work in the family business and become a butcher”.
She told us: “I have always had a huge interest in agriculture from a very young age. After my Leaving Cert, I attended Pallaskenry Agricultural College and completed my Green Cert.”
“As I got older, throughout my teenage years, I also developed an interest in butchering. From the age of 13, during school holidays or weekends, I always used to work and help my dad in our family-run butcher shop.”
“I started with easier duties such as making burgers and cleaning, and as I got older, I became a counter assistant.”
“From there on, I gained more and more knowledge of the different cuts of meat and started to watch and learn through my father, who tutored me the whole way up.”
Read this butcher’s story.
Freelance contributor, Alicia Temple, interviewed Nicola Wordie, a 23-year-old third-generation Scottish cattle, pig and sheep farm.
She is employed full-time on the family farm, which comprises 850- breeding ewes, 240-strong cows plus followers, and a seasonal pig fattening unit.
She told her: “The farm is in one whole block, with the ground level going from 500 to 1,000 feet at the top of the hill. At present, the farm comprises 1,400 acres, all of which we own.”
“I find the most enjoyable aspect of farming life to help and watch new life come into the world, then watching it grow and develop.”
“Every day is a school day. I am always learning and trying to improve what we do.”
“If I could turn back the clock and go back in time, I would tell myself to worry less. One of the biggest challenges I have had to overcome is being a woman in agriculture,” she added.
Read her story.
See other articles we feature on a weekly basis as part of our popular Women in Ag segment.
To share your story as part of our Women in Ag profiles, email – [email protected]
[List compiled based on article view count]