Maize acreage is going to be up 10,000ac on last year, the managing director of Maizetech John Foley maintains.

This increase, Foley said, is between both maize sown in the open and under film. Many farmers will be aware that maize film was in demand this season and in short supply at times.

“This is what’s driving acreage wild.

“We’ve so many farmers looking into the silage pit and nothing in them at this stage and the farmers who’ve taken out the first cut - it has only been a half cut because they didn’t get much fertiliser out.

“[Compostable] plastic is being manufactured now, luckily enough from Limerick, we would be in big trouble with the demand that’s there at the moment if it had to come from China,” he said.

Significant rise

This significant rise in acres this year, Edward Kehoe, business manager with DLF Seeds said, comes following a long winter, a wet spring and no feed reserves left for summer months on farms.

This year, there has been a huge turn to the open sowing is due to improvements in seed varieties and current weather patterns, Kehoe said.

“In open sown varieties we have experienced an increase of 40% on last year.

“There’s huge demand for Resolute and Prospect maize varieties. Plenty more people are wanting to experiment with climbing beans and maize again this year, trying to increase the home-grown protein on farm,” he said. Gordon Shine of Samco said it’s hard to quantify where exactly in the country maize acreage has increased but the increase itself is “sizeable”.

Samco manufactures biodegradable film as plastic can no longer be used to grow maize in the EU.

The Limerick-based company now has a third extruder on the go making this type of film at its facility.

“We didn’t know where the acreage was going to go but the acreage has increased in both the open and under film,” he said.


“What’s in the ground has done quite well. It’s pretty much all wrapped up now. However, things weren’t wrapped up as quick as other years; maize was sown unseasonably late last year and yet the maize harvest was unseasonably early, so it is down to the growing conditions during the year,” Shine said.

The season for maize is generally from 1 May to 1 October, this is despite a lot of maize still being sown up to this week.