Based in Aherla, Co Cork, Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd is a family-run operation which offers a wide range of services to what is a large customer base. Irish Tractor & Agri spoke with Jim Deasy, one of the two men involved in the day-to-day running of the business, to find out all about a thriving contracting outfit down south.
These are busy times at Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd and they’ve been that way for some time now, according to director Jim Deasy.
Operating with 10 tractors in its fleet, the company employs five full-time with father and son Aidan and Jim Deasy running the show together.
The involvement of Jim’s son James, who is currently attending agricultural college, now makes this trusted family outfit a third-generation business now.
Irish Tractor & Agri touched base with Jim recently to learn about the state of business at the moment in Woodview, Aherlamore, Aherla, Co Cork and the hopes for the company as it embarks on a new year.
“I suppose the business is on the go maybe over 50 years now,” Jim outlined. “My father started it young and he’s still working away. We provide a good few services, including slurry work, ploughing, round baling, lime, dung and tillage.
“Right now, we have 10 tractors here – all of them New Hollands – there is one Ford and my father actually has a vintage 7000 model that he’s kept down through the years.”
Aidan Deasy himself established the business from its premises in Aherla and the range of services and machinery has evolved ever since.
2021 marked another busy year for Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd, even in spite of all the challenges that came with it.
“We’re very busy at the moment, to be fair,” said Jim. “There’s a lot of lime being spread at the moment and, thankfully, the lockdown last year had no real impact on the business here.
“The good thing about it was also that there was plenty of drivers available around us here, which was great because we were very busy and still are today.”
The majority of the company’s customer base has been with the Deasys since Aidan first started the business around half a century ago and remain loyal to them to this day.
No doubt there’s plenty of secrets behind the continued success of the family-run operation, with an excellent machinery fleet being one.
A key element is making sure that the machines in Aherla are maintained to the highest standard and the fleet itself is continually upgraded year upon year.
“We bought a new 2016 Combine CX 780 off M&S Machines in Cashel earlier this year, along with a couple of new dump trailers from McCarthys Plant & Agri Sales in Carrigtwohill,” Jim outlined.
“Right now, we’re looking at some new slurry tankers for next year (2022) and we’ve a new New Holland 210 that’s due to arrive here on St Patrick’s Day.
“We try and buy a tractor every year here if we can and next year will be the same.”
Indeed, slurry work is a major part of the business as is round baling, something that Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd has been doing for close to three decades now.
“The baling would be our bread and butter and it is something that we’ve built up ourselves over the years,” said Jim.
So, what has been the secret to success for the Deasy family down through the years?
How has a small start up grown into a thriving farm & plant contracting business over decades to the point now where it has amassed a glowing reputation amongst its clients?
For Jim, much of it is down to the quality service that they provide and the reputation that they have gained for doing so.
“I suppose we’re a family business that’s well known in the area and our customers know what they’re getting with us,” he said.
“I’m there every day and my father’s still driving the business, he turns 70 in January and there’s no stopping him!
“We provide a good and reliable service here and we have excellent machinery too, so that has definitely stood to us over the years I think.”
Along with the contracting services that the Deasys provide, the Aherla-based family also runs a 200 to 300-acre farm which is mainly made of tillage and some grass.
The main cereals that they grow on the land include wheat, maize, barley and beet.
Of course, another component of Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd is its plant work.
It’s a part of the business which seems to be getting busier and busier ever year, with two 16-ton dump trailers on hire all the time.
Looking towards the coming months in a fresh new year, Jim himself says they are quite happy with where they’re at with regards to the workload they’ve had over the past year or so.
Should the opportunity for more expansion come around in 2022, don’t be surprised to see the Deasy clan taking it once again.
“Hopefully, things will just keep going the way that they are going at the moment and that we continue to keep our customers happy here,” he concluded.
Aherla Farm & Plant Contracting Ltd
Mob: 086 246 1014
E-mail: [email protected]
First published in Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 10 No 2, March/April 2022