Johnny and Geraldine Lynch are best-known for diversifying into buffalo farming, an idea which was sprung due to the duo’s disappointment at the price of cows’ milk.
Counting close to one decade later, they have sent shockwaves to the country with the success of their multi-award winning range of Buffalo Mozzarella and expanding product range. Could their phenomenal story encourage more Irish farmers to jump on the buffalo farming bandwagon? Already, there are buffalo in small numbers starting to pop up around the island. Is it time for a switch away from conventional farming?
Raising buffalo for meat and milk is quite similar to dairying and beefing with cattle, breeders have noted. We’ve pinpointed a number of points worth nothing when considering buffalo farming as an option!
- Triple-purpose breed – producers of meat and milk. They are also draft animals.
- Ideal for Irish climate.
- High longevity- Can live up to 25 years of age.
- Docile animals.
- Highly intelligent animals.
- Can turn low-quality forage into high-quality produce.
- Milk is similar to goat’s milk and is highly nutritious.
- The meat is tender and has good flavour, with low cholesterol and lean.
- Easy calving.
- Can cause a lot of damage to trees and poles.
- Extra fencing is required.
- Gates should be secured- Chains and locks are required.
- Extra reinforcement required in the milking parlour if considering dairying as an option for the animals.
- Can be slow maturing.
- Buffalos have a longer gestation length in comparison to cows, on average. This can range from 9-11 months.
- Shorter lactation period- milk for 250 days annually.
- Limited knowledge may be available when dealing with diseases or sick Buffalos.
Would you consider buffalo farming? Do you think that it is a possible farm diversification option? Is there a niche for yoghurt and ice-cream production with Water Buffalo? Let us know your thoughts!