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Saturday 21st January

Growing Tobacco in Ireland

Harry Everard from Kilsheelan, between Carrick-on-Suir & Clonmel aims to make Tipperary the home of the Irish cigar. He has already secured a licence from the Revenue Commissioners for the growing & handling of tobacco & has produced two crops to date.

Teresa May - free movement between North & South

Teresa May's Brexit speech makes clear UK commited to ensure free movement & does not want to see borders of the past in relation to N. Ireland & the Republic of Ireland. Damien speaks to IFA President, Joe Healy & Barclay Bell, President of Ulster Farmers Union.

IFA Annual General Meeting

Brexit is probably the biggest issue facing farming in Ireland 2017 but what about other issues? Damien spoke to farmers at the IFA recent AGM.

South East Women in Farming

Women are great multi-taskers but do they have the skills, strength and know-how to calve cows as well as all the other farming tasks? This week a new group was launched in Carlow aimed at supporting women in farming, called South East Women in Farming.

Marraige Proposal

Anna Martin was shocked when her boyfriend of three years got down on the farmyard and surprised her with a cow proposal on Christmas eve.

Saturday 14th January

Ian McDonagh - BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition

The BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition concludes later today in the RDS. In studio with Damien is a student who is taking part for the second year in a row, Ian McDongah, is a 15 year old 3rd year student from Merlin College in Galway, to tell us about his 'scientific investigation of the cures & folkways of the Irish Traveller'.

Rural Isolation - Keep the home fires burnng

The GAA social initiative began 9 years ago to help combat people living alone & in isolation in rural areas. Damien goes to Cavan to speak to Tom Reilly there, whose project 'Keep the Home fires burning' a spin off of the GAA social initiative in West Cavan, to also tackle rural isolation.

Alan Matthews, Professor Emeritus of Euro Agri Policy in Dept of Economics, TCD

European farmers receive almost 60 billion euro in subsidies from Brussels annually - Irish farmers share around 1.5 billion euro of this with the vast majority dependent on this farm support to make a living as the commodities they produce are sold far below cost of production. However in the EU Parliament a leading expert on the Common Agricultural Policy warned that the days of uniform, area based payments paid to farmers have no place in a modern agricultural policy.

McInerney in Loughrea - Brenda Donohue

More than three quarters of businesses in Ireland are family owned but less than a third actually make it through to the next generation. But what about a family business that has made it through, not only the second, third generation but the fourth? Brenda Donohue visited one such business in Loughrea, Co. Galway - McInerneys General Merchants Store.

Bord Bia announces growth in export sales of Irish food & drink

This week Bord Bia announced record export sales of Irish food & drink internationally of over 11 billion euro in 2016. It is the 7th successive year of growth in the value of sales - despite the effective wiping of 500 million euro of sales to the UK in the 2nd half of the year, representing a 41 per cent growth in exports since 2010. Are the primary producers, farmers getting a kick back? Joining Damien on the line are Edmund Phelan, beef farmer in Co Waterford & ICSA beef committee chairman & Liam Dunne, a tillage farmer from Kildare & IFA grain committee chairman.

Saturday 7th January

2017 for Farmers & Agricultural Sector

So the start of another year, what does it have in store for our farmers & agricultural sector. CAP, Brexit & farmgate prices are the big issues & joining Damien in studio this morning is Justin McCarthy, Editor of the Farmers Journal & Mairead McGuinness, FG MEP.

Singer Donna Taggart

Damien is joined now by Co Tyrone singer Donna Taggart, who looks back as 2016 as a sensational year for her. Her song, Jealous of the Angels became an online hit with nearly 70 million views, reaching No 1 in the US iTunes Easy Listening Charts.

Wicklow Way Wines

With leading wines from parts of New Zealand, California, France, Italy, Spain, South Africa & Chile - the one thing they have in common is the weather to grow the grapes to make the wine. That's why we don't make it in Ireland or do we? Suzanne Campbell joins Damien in studio to talk about an enterprising Co Wicklow couple who have launched a strawberry & blackberry wine, made with Irish fruit.

Nollaig Na MBan - Listowel

Brenda Donohue marks the 6th January, marking the end of the 12 days of Christmas when many women who worked so tirelessly over the festive period, have their own celebration! Brenda joined one such group & danced the night away in John B Keane's Bar in Listowel, Co. Kerry.

Saturday 17th December

Countrywide goes Festive

With 8 days to Christmas, Countrywide goes festive with a Christmas Special - festive songs & carols from Our Lady's Choral Society, Christmas Fesitval Orchestra with conductor Prionnsías Ó Duinn & lots of special guests - Ted Walsh, Catherine Leyden, Paddy Cole, Anna Geary, Mairead Lavery & Seamus O'Rourke to talk about Christmas & the year just gone.

Saturday 3rd December

Pair Trawling

The Irish Wildlife Trust brought th eissue of Pair Trawling to our attention, by calling for a ban in inshore bays & estuaries. Padraig Fogarty Campaigns Officer of the Irish Wildlife Trust & Hugo Boyle of the Irish South & East Fish Producers Organisation join Darragh.

Pheasants - Martina McGlynn

The pheasant shooting season is well underway since November 1st. Martina McGlynn went out with members of Mount Lucas gun club in Offaly to participate in a tradition that is centuries old.

Race Jockey Training

Across the country many eary mornings are being put in mucking out stables as the national hunt season gears up towards the big Christmas meetings in Ireland & the UK. Suzanne Campbell joins Darragh in studio.

GREEN GROW THE SUBSIDIES, OH!

The last installment of this year's Farm Payment from the EU began this week, 30% of the single farm payment as they are now known is dependent of environmental measures or greening in farm speak. But questions are being asked across the water in the UK as to why 100% of the billions of subsidies that are pumped into farming aren't dependent on environmental measures? On the line we have Ian Hodge, Prof of Rural Economy in Cambridge University & Joe Healy, President of the IFA.

Saturday 26th November

1 LITTLE .. NO, 30,000 LITTLE PIGGIES WENT TO NEWTOWNABBEY

A planning application for what will be the biggest pig farm in the UK from farmer, Derek Hall in Newtownabbey, Co Antrim, that will house 15,000 animals has been approved despite vocal protests from local residents. Allan Preston of the Belfast Telegraph is on the line to tell us a little bit more.

..AND THE GEESE ( AND TREES) ARE GETTING FAT

Almost half of Irish households are likely to buy a real Irish Christmas tree this year, with over 350,000 trees expected to be sold throughout the country in the run up to the big day. Brenda Donohue travelled to Tralee in Co. Kerry to meet Christmas tree grower, Paudie Sugrue, who has a novel way of weed control on his plantation!

THEY RACED THROUGH THE CONFERENCE AGENDA

Recently 270 working snail farmers & potential future farmers attended the Naional Snail Farming Conference in Tullamore. It was organised by the Nat Organic Training Skillnet. Our reporter Louise Denvir went there & met some of these snail farmers.

NO CURLEWS HERE FOR MUCH LONGER

We have all heard of the serious decline in the number of corncrakes that are breeding in this country & measures to protect them. But what about another species of wetland bird, which is also under threat, the Irish curlew. Frances Shanahan travelled to Banagher in County Offaly to meet Anita Donaghy of Birdwatch Ireland.

SURELY THEY HAVE THEIR OWN ASSES?

Yesterday the Irish Field told us that Ireland's top show jumping horse, MHS Going Global, was soldto Greek shipping heiress Athina Onassis in a multimillion euro deal. Irish Field's Woman in Tipperary Catriona Murphy joins Daragh in studio & on the line we have former owner of MHS Going Global, Greg Broderick of Broderick's Ballypatrick Stables.

Saturday 19th November

GAME FOR A MEAL

Food & Farming reporter Suzanne Campbell joins Damien in studio this morning to talk about rabbits, the scourge of many farmers who say they eat young crop & trees, but they were once a key part of the Irish diet. Suzanne also visited a furred game workshop in Macreddin, Wicklow to learn how to cook & prepare rabbit & hares for eating.

CLIMATE FOR A CHANGE

US President elect Donald Trump dosen't believe in climate change so much so that there is fear he could rescind America's support of Paris Climate accord. Joining Damien is Denis Naughton, Minister for Communications who was at a recent UN Climate Change summit in Marakech this week.

KEANE TO FARM

Damien speaks to Will Kane who lead the Yes Vote in the recent campaign for marraige equality. Will is a 36 year old beef farmer in Co. Roscommon which was the only county that voted No. Will also featured in a TV Documentary 'The only gay in the Village' & Damien visited his farm last week.

FOOD FAD OR FOOD FACT

The explosion in protein treats has accelerated over the past couple of years, migrating from sports shops & gyms to the mainstream sweet counter. What is so special about these bars. First a report from Diarmuid McIntyre & joining Damien in studio is Criona Tobin who is a performance nutritionist working with many of Ireland's top track & field athletes.

Saturday 12th November

JACKS OLD COTTAGE

Jacks Old Cottage is in Islandeady, Co.Mayo whose owner is Joe Moylette. Brenda was there earlier this week & met with him and retired Ag Inspector Michael Fitzsimons and Mildred Byrne fill in the dots as Mildred conducts the line dancing class. Brenda joins Damien in studio to tell us all about her visit to Jack's Old Cottage!

HURLEY STICKS TO IT

With 46 years in the entertainment business and still going strong legend Red Hurley popped in to see us early this week for a chat & performance of a song, Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears.

COWTOWN

In its day the Dublin Livestock Market was the biggest market in Europe. Declan O'Brien, journalist with the Farming Independent is currently researching the market for his PHD & last week won an Agriguild award for an article on his work. Louise Denvir spoke to Declan this week & some of those who remember the market which closed in 1973.

LOOS CANNON

Nebraska farmer & broadcaster Trent Loos and old friend of the show speaks to Damien about the part of America it seems that we have not been subject to during the mainstream coverage of the US election campaign that would include rural America and farming country with his views on Trumps win.

NOT AN ExTractor Fan

Joining Damien in studio is Gary Ryan, Chief Exec of the Farm Tractor & Machinery Trade Association on farming & machinery sales here. First, this week the European Tractor of Year was announced.

CountryWide

People, events and happenings around the country, presented by Speech Broadcaster of the Year Damien O'Reilly.

Saturday 29th October

CLIMB ON BOARD THE CLIMATHON

Climathon is a 24 hour working event taking place yesterday and today in 59 cities around the world.. from Lima to London and from Canberra to Cork.

St Patrick

John Reynolds is a farmer, who has an interesting story to tell of St. Patrick, but St. Patrick, not as we know him. Louise Denvir, joined John on his farm in Leitrim where John was churning butter.

Stocktons Wing

Stocktons Wing came in in during the week to play a couple of tunes for us. They're playing the opening show of new venue Magistorium in Dublin on Thursday 3rd of November.  Twitter: @stocktonswing1 and @Magistorium_

IFA

Jenny O Sullivan was chatting to farmers in Bantry who took part in the farmers rights march from all over the Country which happened fifty years ago this week. And if you think current industrial action is radical, its nothing compared to what those farmers did half a century ago.

Pumpkins

Along with spooky pupils from St. Columcille’s National School in Togher, and also from Professor Jimmy Burke, Brenda Donohoe dropped by Micheals farm in Togher to have a goo at his giant pumpkins. For more Halloween fun, the Virginia Pumpkin Festival is on this weekend; there’s lots of information about the events on www.pumpkinfestival.ie

Charlie Hackett

Thirteen year old Kilkenny college student Charlie Hackett from his farm in Geashil County Offaly looking for farmers to be more upbeat about the good things in farming.  Twitter: @kilkennycollege

Saturday 15th October

Frances Shanahan

The Grow It Yourself movement has blossomed in parallel and recently opened a new headquarters in Waterford City.  Frances Shanahan went there to see if she could release her inner gardner.

MULLAGH OF EGGS

Margaret Farrelly was awarded the European Women Farmers Innovation Award by COPA - the European farming and Co-op body-  in Brussels during the week. Pictured with Phil Hogan.  She runs Clonard Clover and O'Egg both from Mullagh in Cavan.  http://www.oegg.ie/

SHED YOUR INHIBITIONS

Brenda Donohue visited the Mullighmeen Men’s Shed in Westmeath which is located on Martin and Margaret Smyth’s farm. http://menssheds.ie/

The Budget - Joe Healy

A short synopsis on the budget in ergards to the agriculture section of Ireland.

NOAH'S ARK

Jim Gavin is not just Dublin football manager, but a qualified pilot, so he was on board with Bothar's flight to Rwanda. This was the largest flight of Irish farm animals ever and Jim talked to Damien just after his arrival in Kigali, capital of Rwanda http://bothar.ie/ http://www.dublingaa.ie/news/blog-jim-gavins-bothar-mission-in-rwanda

Saturday 8th October

THE FIELD

Oscar winning film – The Field.. a 6 part series on TG4 in November. Dr Paddy Prendergast of O'Brien Prendergast & Associates,  Brid Ni Ghruagain   is director for the series , producer and musician. Sean T O Meallaigh is writer on the series,  Robert Ganley is Director of Ganley Walters Property Agents

ANTIMICROBIAL RESISTANCE

Martin Cormican, Professor of Clinical Bacteriology  in NUI Galway and Mike McGann , Chair of Animal Health Ireland which acts to link businesses in the agri-food sector and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

HERDWATCH AND RABDF

An Irish farming technology company go to Buckingham Palace on Tuesday  next, 11 October, so that Prince Philipcan present them with the (Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers ) RABDF Prince Philip Award  for 2016.

Quality Milk Awards

This week saw the Annual National Dairy Council & Kerrygold Quality Milk Awards and the winner of this years Milk Oscars was The Power family near Cappagh in West Waterford. So a trip to see the farm set against a  backdrop of the Comeragh and Knockmealdown Mountains was needed.

Saturday 1st October

DRONING ON ABOUT RURAL CRIME

PC Andy Long Of Essex Police Johann Tasker of Farmers Weekly in Britain explains some of the problems of and responses to Rural Crime across the water. Johann's Tweet @johanntasker Check video @PcAndyLong

CONSUME OR DIE or CONSUME (TOO MUCH) AND DIE

Dr Cara Augustenborg is an environmental Scientist and Chair of Friends of the Earth Ireland, Climate Lecturer at UCD and Fulbright Scholar. What are we doing about climate change and making Irish farming produce less Green House Gases Cara's Twitter @CAugustenborg

Food Works and Bord Bia

Just as well it does..No, it's the start up support scheme of Bord Bia and 2 of the new kids on the block are in to talk to Damien Michael and Jane Murphy run Pro-U, a high protein yoghourt: Anne Kinsella and Niamh Duffy run Crumble’n’Crunch, a cheese product for salads, pizza, pasta.

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Text: 51551

Presenter: Damien O'Reilly

Producer: Ian Wilson

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