ASA Sheep Masterclass


Irish Country Meats, Camolin

On Wednesday, 6th February over 30 attendees travelled to ICM Camolin to attend the ASA Sheep Masterclass 2019. The event afforded the opportunity to gain an insight into the latest developments in research and processing/marketing to support the Irish Sheep Industry. ASA president, Amii McKeever, opened the event and John Walsh of ICM welcomed speakers and attendees to their impressive facilities in Camolin. The day began with a tour of the facilities including an excellent insight into the level of processing and added value applied to the carcass post slaughter. This included detailing of the logistical requirements to supply cuts to meet the 52 week customer demand of national and international customers.
Upon returning to the meeting room a number of excellent presentations were delivered by Dr. Philip Creighton, Prof. Eric Morgan and Kevin McDermott M.Agr.Sc. Philip highlighted the role of increased litter size (and the associated efficiency gains) and increased stocking rate in driving on farm profitability. The clear message from Phillip’s talk, was that any increases in stocking rate, or output must be driven by increased grass growth and utilisation. Prof. Morgan from Queens University Belfast, told of the ever declining efficacy of Anthelmintic products on farms globally coupled with the challenges of altered epidemiology patters arising from a changing climate. Eric stressed the need for the adoption of SCOPS (sustainable Control Of Parasites in Sheep) approaches particularly in relation to targeted selective treatment. Kevin McDermott of Sheep Ireland highlighted the advances in sheep breeding under the guidance of Sheep Ireland and how the Eurostar Index can deliver an additional profit of €5/ewe/year.
One of the highlights of the day was hearing from young researchers, that are passionate about the sheep industry. Kyra Hamilton, Dwayne Shiels, Nicola Fetherstone and Daniel Hession presented their PhD studies on a range of topics from lamb mortality, to genetics, mineral nutrition and parasite control.
Philip Creighton – Developing grassland management practices on-farm to increase flock productivity
Kevin McDermott, Sheep Ireland – Irish Sheep Breeding Advances
Prof.Eric Camolin – Preserving efficacy of anthelmintics in sheep (Part 1)
Prof.Eric Camolin – Preserving efficacy of anthelmintics in sheep (Part 2)

Research PhD students
Dwayne Shiels – Ewe and lamb behaviour and lamb mortality during the periparturient period
Kyra Menai Hamilton – Anthelmintic Resistance in Ireland and New Zealand
Nicola Fetherstone – An Irish vs New Zealand animal comparison
Daniel Hession – Mineral deficiency in flocks




Thank you to Irish Country Meats for their sponsorship of this event

ICM Lamb Specialists