Young Farmers Series: Meet Donal who’s running a livestock B&B on his 50 hectare farm


Donal Glennon is this week's young farmer and this Meath man is some operator!

Young Farmers Series: Meet Donal who’s running a livestock B&B on his 50 hectare farm

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  • 3 years ago

Donal Glennon is this week's young farmer and this Meath man is some operator!

Donal Glennon is no joke the 39 year old Meath man runs a tight ship in his native Athboy and things are going well.

‘I’m a contractor and a farmer…I’m always busy,’ he says as he drives to his next job while talking to That’s Farming.

Glennon farms a little bit differently to anyone we know but it also seems to be working for him.

‘I keep 20 suckler cows at the moment and I calve them in September and wean them by the end of March/April.’

Glennon is the first to admit that he’s calving at an odd time of year but its because he sells his first cut silage.

‘Everything is connected with me, if it makes money then I’ll do it…I calve early but that means I have my calves weaned and sold early. Last year I got €2.75 a kil for 402 kilos which worked out at €1102 for my weanling. It’s a quick turnaround.’

Donal has tried large scale farming and ran a 75 cow farm with 150 sheep a few years ago but found he can make more profit in this new model. He likes his 20 suckler cows and has invested time into buying Belgian blue cows because they have the milk and crosses them with a limousine stock bull.

‘I’m supposed to have half my herd at 5 star cows by 2020 but I’m already way past that,’ he says.

It’s a system that’s all working for Donal and he is making money. How? He has turned his sheds and fields into a livestock B&B.

‘I take cows and sheep in and feed them for men…at the moment I have 150 sheep grazing some ground and I’ve taken in 30 weanlings this year.’

He has found this B&B method has provided cash flow at times when he most needs it.

‘I try and be productive at all times of the year. Its why I went into tillage too,’ he explains.

Donal is currently growing corn as a cash crop.

‘I didn’t know anything about corn when I started but you plant it, fertilize it and spray it, it is straightforward.’

Donal has worked in building and lorry driving but farming has always been his passion.

‘It’s the thing I love, don’t get me wrong I served my time on the buildings and I drove an oil lorry but there’s nothing like farming.’

Not content to just rest on his laurels Donal has a side business as a hedge cutter and employs a second man alongside him.

‘I suppose I’m doing my bit for the local economy and creating a job it’s good,’ he admits.

Looking to the future Donal says he is happy where he is at and things are going well. He will continue to keep following his own system because he says it works for him.

With a young family in toe the future looks bright for this industrious Meath man.

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