Bernice Renaghan was born and bred in Clontibret in the heartland of traditional Irish chicken farming country. She continues to live there on her 92-acre farm with her husband Nigel and her 3 children Pat, Peter and Katie. She used to work on her father's farm, Nigel who also supplied Manor Farm and she herself got directly involved in 2008. On the farm, she also breeds Aberdeen Angus cattle.
She is proud of the quality of her farm and the extra dimension that Manor Farm brings to the infrastructure of the farm. The guidelines laid down by the company are very rigorous and are constantly supervised daily by Bernice herself and also by regular visits from the Manor Farm Farm Advisor who also continually checks on the welfare of the birds. The feed diet that the birds eat comes from the Manor Farm Chicken only Feed Mill and this feed constituent changes depending on the age of the birds.
A typical day starts early in the morning when Bernice walks among the chickens to check that they are all OK and feeding well. She checks on the ventilation systems, makes sure that the temperature is at the optimum level for the age of the birds and also ensures that there is adequate feed in the silos as well as checking that the bedding is OK. This is repeated a number of times during the day. Although Bernice admits that there is no such thing as a typical day with every day bringing new challenges.
The Bord Bia and Department of Agriculture required paperwork is also filled out daily. Because of the nature of looking after chickens, this is a job that runs 24 hours a day and 7 days a week which makes it difficult to take a break without huge support. It is also for this reason that makes Chicken Farming well suited to families. These families, in turn, pass on their skill, knowledge and experience to their future generations.
Outside of farming Bernice says there is little time for anything else what with looking after the family and the farm but she does like books.
Bernice as with all our chicken Farmers also loves to eat chicken and among her favourite chicken dishes she has: