Robert Watson

Robert Watson’s farm in Cavan – saved €5,990

The Smart Farming team examined soil fertility, energy use, grassland management, water use, feed, inputs, waste, time, and machinery management on Robert’s farm and identified savings of €5,990

Grassland – €1,080 saving

  • Good reseeding plan in place.
  • Where weather permits, costs can be reduced by targeting a stock turn out date of mid-March, with an extended grazing season.
  • Potential savings of €1.50/cow/day.

Feed – €600 saving

  • Quantity of meal fed should be tailored based on silage analysis results.
  • Savings can be generated through bulk buying and increased price checking.

Soil fertility – €4,150 saving

  • Most soils are index 1 and index 2. Index 3 is optimum.
  • Lime deficiency on the farm is reducing grass growth.
  • Spread 42 tonnes of lime.
  • 5 Year programme of additional phosphorus (P) proposed. Use of organic P proposed.

Energy – €70 saving

  • Review energy supplier.
  • Switch from T8 to T5 lights.

Machinery – €90 saving

  • Turn off engine, don’t leave engines ticking over

Time management – Minimum saving


Water – Minimum Saving


Inputs & waste – Minimum Saving


Total Savings – €5,990

Reducing the climate impact by 20%

During the Smart Farming Cost Saving Study, a carbon reduction strategy for Robert’s farm was developed using the Carbon Navigator decision support tool developed by Teagasc and Bord Bia.

Potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% was identified. Many of the measures, such as nitrogen efficiency and slurry spreading timing will also lead to other positive environmental outcomes and reduce risks to water quality. Take a closer look at the Carbon Navigator results.