One of the first major things I implemented when I started farming was grass measuring. Surplus bales go hand in hand with grass management, so every year we make more and more silage bales. In 2016 we started using all pink plastic for wrapping our bales. The #WrapItPink campaign really is a fantastic campaign raising awareness for Breast Cancer whilst also raising vital funds for the Irish Cancer Society.
The reality is with 4 women involved in the farm Breast Cancer Awareness is so important. Having met nurses who work in creating awareness they always said early detection is the key to survival. On a personal level I think its nice to see fields full of pink bales around the countryside. We had a stack of 600 pink bales in the yard last year and as we welcomed tour groups from many corners of the world, it was something every tour group commented on. Six weeks ago our three girls asked could we try and source some yellow bale wrap, which is for Childrens Cancer Awareness. After some searching, I stumbled upon a Swedish company Trioplast who put me in contact with managing director Jim Davidson.

It turns out Trioplast are experts in producing coloured bale wrap with three charity colours, Pink, Yellow & Blue (prostate cancer awarenes) whilst they also produce white & green wrap exporting all over the world, which gives us peace of mind using coloured bale wrap that we will still have top quality silage. It’s a question we get asked regularly, will coloured wrap have any negative impact on silage quality compared to black bale wrap? We seem to have a slight obsession with black wrap in Ireland, the key with any bale wrap, be it black or coloured is that first of all it’s a quality bale wrap. Trioplast supply so many countries, they make a donation to cancer research in relevant regions depending on how many rolls are sold in those regions.

Jim Davidson is one of life’s real genuine helpful guys and after a few phone calls and emails, Jim managed to organise a merchant who would supply us with yellow wrap, with only 15 rolls on a pallet it is quite easy for merchants to stock some and there was a stock of yellow wrap in a warehouse in Ireland just waiting to wrap some Irish grass. I’ve since found out Aurivo, Kerry, Glanbia, Arrabawn and Carbery coops can all stock yellow wrap as well as various other merchants around the country should anyone else like to wrap some yellow bales.

Two weeks ago we mowed 25 acres of meadow for haylage. With ideal weather, the crop was ready to bale within two days, so our contractor Jim Deasy and team armed with two McHale Fusion balers turned the 25 acres into a sea of Pink and Yellow bales. It’s a rare sight in Ireland seeing 200 coloured bales in a field so it attracted plenty of attention and even more so as Jim’s team started hauling the bales home, trailer after trailer load of coloured bales. We have had plenty of enquiries since from farmers asking where they can source some yellow bale wrap and we are happy to help anyone source some. I think its also a great way for us farmers to engage with the general public as they seem to really like the idea of us doing something to create awareness for cancer.