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Key Findings

Table A - Number of farms, Average Farm Size and Average Standard Output, by Region
    
 StateBorder Midland & WestSouthern & Eastern
Total Farms ('000s)139.673.666.0
Average Farm Size (ha)32.527.138.6
Average Standard Output €35,912€23,013€50,303
  • In 2013 there were 139,600 farms in Ireland. More than half (52.7%) of all farms were located in the Border, Midland and Western (BMW) region.
  • The average farm was 32.5 hectares.
  • Farms in the Southern and Eastern (SE) region were 42.4% larger than those in the BMW region, with average farm sizes of 38.6 hectares compared to 27.1 hectares respectively.
Border, Midland and WestSouthern and Eastern
<10 hectares15.59.8
10 - < 20 hectares21.213
20 - < 30 hectares13.710.9
30 - < 50 hectares14.515.8
50 - < 100 hectares7.313
> = 100 hectares1.43.4
<1015.59.8
10 - < 2021.213
20 - < 3013.710.9
30 - < 5014.515.8
50 - < 1007.313
> = 1001.43.4
  • Almost one in five of all farms (17.9%) were 50 hectares or more in size while just over two in five farms (42.7%) had less than 20 hectares.
  • Over 60% of farms of 10 hectares or less were in the BMW region, while over 72% of farms of 100 hectares or more were in the SE region.
  • Specialist beef production continued to be the most common farm type or activity, accounting for over half of all farms in 2013 (78,800).
  • Over two thirds of Specialist sheep farms were in the BMW region (67.3%), while the SE Region contained almost 80% of Specialist tillage farms (79.2%) and Specialist dairying farms (78.8%).
  • Specialist beef production was more common in the BMW, where it accounted for almost two thirds (62.9%) of all farms. In contrast just under half (49.2%) of farms in the SE region were engaged in Specialist beef production.
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State
Specialist
Tillage
3.8
Specialist
Dairying
11.2
Specialist
Beef
Production
56.5
Specialist
Sheep
10.7
Mixed
and
other
Farm Types
17.8
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State
Mixed
Grazing
Livestock
9.4
Mixed Crops
and
Livestock
1.9
Mixed
Field Crops
5.7
Other0.9
Grassland (excl. Rough Grazing)CerealsOther Crops, Fruit and HorticultureRough GrazingCommonage
State3640.9307.983.1424.2423.1
Border593.9249.3111.3105.4
Midland387.532.96.8172.1
West665.15.54.197.8169.6
Mid-East and Dublin312.984.622.218.829.8
Mid-West5029.93.240.27.6
South-East547.1105.322.625.126
South-West632.445.714.911482.6
  • The total amount of Agricultural Area (including commonage) used in 2013 was just under 5 million hectares (4.96 million). Just over one half (54.2%) was located in the SE Region and the remainder in the BMW Region.
  • Excluding commonage, a total of 4.536 million hectares were farmed in 2013.
  • Most of the main land farmed was Grassland (81.4%).
  • Almost two thirds of the total commonage (423,000 hectares) was located in the BMW Region, while over one half of rough grazing land was located there (53.0%).
  • The SE Region contained almost 80% of the total land devoted to cereals and over half of all grassland (54.7%).
Average Standard Output
State35912
Border, Midland & West23013
Border25443
Midland36673
West15321
South & East50303
Mid-East & Dublin52527
Mid-West37154
South-East62792
South-West49484
  • Average Standard Output per farm was €35,912 in 2013. Standard output is the average monetary value of agricultural output at farm-gate prices. (See Background Notes)
  • Standard Output in the SE Region was just over €50,000, more than twice that of the BMW Region (€23,013).
  • The largest level of output was in the South-East region (€62,792) while the lowest was recorded in the West (€15,321).
  • Almost 30,000 farms had an SO of less than €4,000, 60% of which were in the BMW region. In contrast, almost 75% of the 24,000 farms with an SO of €50,000 or more were in the SE region.
  • Six out of ten farms with standard output less than €8000 were in the BMW Region.
Table B - Number of farms, number of animals and average number of animals per farm in each region - 2013
('000)
 Number of farmsNumber of animalsAverage animals per farm
State   
        Cattle111.36,902.662
        Sheep36.64,942.2135
        Pigs1.31,551.71,194
        Poultry8.110,133.21,251
Border, Midland and West   
        Cattle58.62,625.145
        Sheep23.72,749.9116
        Pigs0.6744.01,240
        Poultry4.06,960.11,740
Southern and Eastern   
        Cattle52.74,277.581
        Sheep12.92,192.3170
        Pigs0.7807.71,154
        Poultry4.13,173.1774
  • In 2013 there were 6.9 million cattle in Ireland, 62% of which were located in the SE Region.
  • Of the 1.163 million dairy cows in 2013, 80% were in the SE Region.
  • There was a total of 4.9 million sheep in Ireland in 2013. Just over one half (55.6%) were located in the BMW Region.
  • The highest number of sheep was in the West with just over 1.3 million, representing more than one quarter of the total national flock (26.5%).
  • In 2013 there were 1.552 million pigs in Ireland. More than one quarter of these were located in the Border.
  • Ireland had more than 10 million poultry in 2013. The vast majority of these (68.7%) were located in the BMW Region with the Border having the greatest concentration (6.65 million birds or 65.6% of the total).
Table C - Comparsion of Structure of farming in Ireland 2010 - 2013
 20102013% change
Total farms139,860139,600-0.20%
Average farm size (hectares)35.735.5-0.6%
Average standard output (€)30,72635,91216.9%
Total UAA (hectares)4,994,3534,959,500-0.7%
Total Cattle6,606,5856,902,6004.5%
Total Sheep4,745,4244,942,2004.1%
Total Pigs1,516,2911,551,7002.3%
Total Poultry10,924,80710,133,200-7.2%
Total Labour Input (AWU)162,345166,7002.7%
  • The number of farms and the average farm size remained relatively stable between 2010 and 2013.
  • The average standard output increased by 16.9% in the three-year period, from €30,726 to €35,912.
  • There was some increase in the total number of cattle (+4.5%), sheep (+4.1%) and pigs (+2.3%).
  • The total number of poultry in the country decreased by 7.2% to 10,133,200 birds.
  • The total labour input increased by 2.7% between 2010 and 2013 to 166,700 Annual Work Units (AWU). One AWU is 1,800 hours or more of labour input per person per annum.

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