September 2017 Newsletter

Milk Price, Super Levy Instalment Scheme, Mastitis Control Programme, Reseeding Demonstration, Autumn Feeding, Sensitivity Testing

22 September 2017

Milk Price

The Board of Directors have increased the milk price for the month of August by 1.0 cent per litre - bringing the price to 37.31 cpl (169.61 cents per gallon) at 3.60% butterfat and 3.30% protein, including Summer Somatic Cell Count (SCC) bonus of 0.5 cpl and VAT at 5.4%.

The average price paid for the month is 42.05 cents per litre. This is based on the average butterfat of 4.15% and protein of 3.60%, including SCC and VAT.

Super Levy Instalment Scheme

The instalment scheme for the payment of the 2014/2015 super levy is now finished. The last payment is made on August 2017 milk supply.

Mastitis Control Programme

All purchases of intramammary tubes - both milking cow and dry cow products are by veterinary prescription only. The regulations allow milk processing Co-Ops, who operate an approved

Mastitis Control Programme, to provide veterinary prescriptions for all suppliers who sign up to this programme.

Drinagh Co-Op operates an approved mastitis control programme that allows for the issuance of veterinary prescriptions. The script supplied will be valid for up to 12 months.

Included in this months statement is a Mastitis Control Programme Contract for anybody who wishes to join the programme or renew their contract.

This years contract also contains information on the 7 steps of a good Mastitis Control Programme which should be retained. If you wish to join the programme, fully complete and sign the Mastitis Control Programme Contract and return the completed contract only to the Central Office.

A copy of the contract, signed by the vet and a representative of the Co-Op will be returned to you for your own records with the prescription in due course.

Reseeding Demonstration

reseeding day
A view of the crowd at the reseeding demonstaration

Skibbereen Pharmacy Giveaways

Drinagh Pharmacy Skibbereen is twenty years in business this September and to celebrate will have great customer giveaways in store every day until October 7 th 2017. Since opening, the Pharmacy has grown to be one of the busiest in Munster. Michael and staff would like to offer a big thank you to all customers for their great support and look forward to serving you in the future.

Autumn Feeding

Autumn Feeding

Autumn grass may look perfectly leafy and green however in West Cork current grass analysis has shown:

  • Low dry matter %
  • Low energy levels
  • Protein levels variable

Poor weather conditions has hammered grass dry matter levels. Sunshine levels have been low and hence grass sugar levels are very low which result in low energy levels. Autumn grass is low in fibre and with the wet weather animals are anxious on such grass. In wet weather consider giving access to straw or long fibre dry silage. In well fertilized farms, grass is high in crude protein level. However, on some farms grass is low in protein where fertilizer has been washed away or in low fertilizer regimes.

Financially, feeding cows has rarely been a better investment. On many farms 1 kg meal will result in 1 – 2kgs milk. We recommend our New Score Autumn 17% Hi Maize Nuts, formulated to complement autumn grass. It is designed to match the pitfalls outlined above and also to:

  • Help prolong the grazing season
  • Keep lactose levels high
  • Improve / maintain body condition

Alternatively, consider feeding Score 16% Dairy Nut, which covers the dairy cow in a year round situation.

Sensitivity Testing

It is not possible to tell which bacteria are responsible for infections by looking at milk, udders or somatic cell counts – you actually have to grow the bacteria present in the milk to know for sure. This procedure is called sensitivity analysis.

To get a good profile of what bacteria is in the herd it is recommended to test 4 samples – one from the bulk tank and 3 samples from individual high cell count cows. These cows should not have been treated with a milking cow tube in the previous 100 days before the sample is taken. As this can be difficult to achieve towards the end of lactation – best practice is to take samples from problem cows earlier in the lactation before a high SCC cow is treated with a mastitis tube. These samples can be stored in the freezer until sending off for sensitivity analysis later in the year.

Sterile sample collection is the most important step for successful culturing of milk. Poor technique may give misleading results. Only a small amount of milk is required for analysis – trying to get a large sample increases the chance of contamination.

For fresh samples, it is important that the sample is received by the lab within 24 hours of the sample being taken.

For further information contact AHL in Shinagh @ 023 8854100

Robert Ellis in action with his Aitchison seed drill at the reseeding demonstration


  • Skibbereen Pharmacy giveaways everyday this month
  • Mastitis Control Programme Contract in this month’s accounts