Family fun on the farm – 2,000 enjoy day out at Glanbia event
MORE than 2,000 people enjoyed a family day out on the farm of an Avonmore milk supplier where they got a chance to experience first-hand life on a working dairy farm.
Consumers were able to learn more about the journey their fresh milk takes from the herds of dairy cows grazing our green pastures to the Avonmore cartons on the table.
Larry and Karen Hannon, producers of fresh milk for the Avonmore brand, kindly opened the gates of their farm in Ballitore, Co Kildare for consumers.
The Open Farm event was supported by Kilkenny-based Glanbia Ireland and was one of three staged nationally yesterday by Agri Aware, the independent farming and agri-food educational body.
It is a charitable trust whose mission is to improve the image and understanding of agriculture, farming and the food industry among the general public.
Deirdre O’Shea, Executive Director of Agri Aware, said: “The reason for the event was to reconnect people with agriculture, to educate them about where their food is coming from and the process behind getting the food from the farm to the plate.
“We’re delighted with the number of people that turned out on the farm today, particularly the number of families from towns in the region. It goes to show there really is a demand and an appetite out there for food education. Many of the visitors had never been on a farm before which showed the huge need there is for events like this.”
The Hannon family, including Lucy (13), twins Sally and Amy (10), enjoyed meeting the hundreds of families who travelled to their home in Ballitore.
Dairy farmer Larry Hannon said: “We really enjoyed the experience of having all the families on the farm because we have a great story to tell. We’re so close to our local factory in Ballitore and I think it was clear to consumers on the farm the level of pride that we take in producing fresh milk.”
Glanbia Group Chairman Martin Keane said: “We were delighted to see so many people visit the farm as events like this are important opportunities to communicate with customers. Glanbia is all about the people, the people who get up early in the morning to milk cows and the generations of families working on farms.
“We build on the excellence of the production method, with quality milk from animals outside grazing on grass. It’s about bringing a really good product that you can trust every day to Avonmore consumers.”
On the action-packed day there were cookery demonstrations from chef Edward Hayden, a Kids’ zone and a ‘Meet the Farmer’ platform where people got to ask questions about where their milk comes from.
In addition, the team who run the Ballitore plant were there to explain the journey of the milk from the farm to the fridge.
The Avonmore Milk Bar was in high demand, while Glanbia Ireland’s milk quality team were demonstrating the science behind the production of quality milk.
Kildare’s local radio station Kfm were broadcasting live from the farm, while children were enjoying face painting, a demonstration of machinery and sheep shearing.
PHOTOS: Pat Moore