Kildare dairy farmer wins top national award

Big win for Andrew and Miriam Bennett

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Kildare dairy farmer wins top national award

Michael Hanley, CE of Lakeland Dairies, Miriam Bennett, Minister Heather Humphreys, Andrew Bennett, Alo Duffy, Chairman of Lakeland Dairies and David Gunn, Easyfix.

A dairy farmer from Donadea has been crowned the Lakeland Dairies Supreme Milk Quality Award Winner.

Andrew and Miriam Bennett emerged as the cream of the crop from among 2,500 milk producers supplying a total of 1.2 Bn litres of milk annually to Lakeland Dairies, across 15 counties north and south.

SEE ALSO: Kildare woman wins top media award for radio documentary

At the Lakeland Dairies Milk Quality Awards, dairy farmers from both sides of the border won top honours for the exceptionally high quality of milk produced on their farms.

The awards publicly recognise the achievements of Lakeland Dairies’ milk suppliers who are committed to efficiency and quality in all aspects of their milk production. 

The awards were presented by Business Enterprise and Innovation Minister, Heather Humphreys, together with Lakeland Dairies’ Chairman Alo Duffy and Group CEO, Michael Hanley at a special ceremony held in Cavan.

Winning a milk quality award is a major achievement. Awards were presented in a number of categories:

The Bennetts won the 500,000+ litres milk production category and were also crowned overall Supreme Milk Quality Award Winners. 

Congratulating the winners, Minister Humphreys said: “Over the next five years, Ireland will continue to be among the world’s fastest growing dairy producers as a global leader in terms of the safety, sustainability and traceability of our production from family farms, through our processing facilities and onwards to consumers in markets across the world.

“The winners of these awards are exemplary because, through their dedication and commitment, they are supporting our country’s justified and hard earned worldwide reputation for quality. Based on these achievements, I am confident that we will continue to be competitive and successful and I congratulate all of the members of Lakeland Dairies for the great progress that is being achieved by thisfarmer owned co-operative.”

Lakeland Dairies Chairman Alo Duffy said: “The milk quality awards are a source of great pride because they centre on excellence in dairy farming. The markets that we deal with are largely demand led, with multiple supply channels for customers and consumers to choose from. 

“They want products that are safely, securely and sustainably produced and we need to be able to verify that this is the case to the satisfaction of our international customers. The milk we collect for processing, produced from pasture fed herds on family owned farms, is the high quality raw material on which we have built our reputation as a global dairy provider.”

Lakeland Chief Executive Michael Hanley said: “Lakeland Dairies’ milk producers are well placed to cater for global dairy demand as a result of the overall efficiency and sustainability of our production and processing systems. We have made strategic investments to create the scale and flexibility that are necessary to compete successfully on a worldwide basis.

“The quality of our dairy farmers and the milk that they supply to us is simply world class. That is what underpins our opportunity for future growth as a farmer owned co-operative exporting 240 different dairy products and food ingredients to customers in 80 countries worldwide.”