The livestock transport specialist

11 Mar , 2020  

Michael O’Riordan Livestock Transport in Watergrasshill, Co. Cork provides a top-class livestock transport service to a large number of customers in the Munster region and beyond.

Now 71, Michael O’Riordan was literally born into the business. “It’s been a way of life for as long as I can remember,” he explains.

“I was born on February 29, 1948 – a leap year – and on the same day my father went out and spent £420 on a new lorry to haul livestock and we’ve been doing it ever since. We’ve amassed a wealth of experience in that time and I’m still going strong, despite having my two hips and one of my knees replaced. I was also attacked a few years ago by a bull who summersaulted me on to his back where I was for about a minute. Bulls have fierce power and, needless to say, I’ve been very careful around them ever since.

“As the old saying goes, ‘your health is your wealth’.”

Among the services provided by Michael O’Riordan Livestock Transport are cattle transport, pig transport, sheep transport, farm-to-farm livestock transport, farm-to-factory livestock transport and farm-to-mart livestock transport. With a fleet of livestock transportation trailers, equipped with watering and ventilation systems that are Department of Agriculture inspected and approved, livestock are safely and humanely transported.

“Duleek is the furthest north we go which means the maximum journey time for any of the livestock we transport is three hours.”

Michael has built up a large customer-base over the years, which includes the Department of Agriculture, Hunter International Livestock, Teagasc Moorepark and numerous farmers in the Munster area. He is also an agent for Kepak in Watergrasshill, Ashbourne Meats in Roscrea and ABP in Bandon.

Hunter International Livestock are one of Michael’s biggest customers. Michael brings calves to their base in Fermoy for export to France and Spain. He also does regular runs to factories for William Aherne of Synone House in Cashel (cows and bulls) and Barry Walsh in Cork (cows).

Another good customer is Teagasc Moorepark in Fermoy for whom Michael hauls pigs to Dawn Pork and Bacon in Waterford. Michael also transports sheep three-four times a week for the likes of O’Farrell Meats in Midleton, Cork Mart, Michael Breslin, Cork and C Crowley, Ballincollig.

Michael O’Riordan Livestock Transport has established itself as a leader in its field by providing a service that has no equal in terms of reliability, value-for-money and excellence. The company’s state-of-the-art fleet comprises two Volvo and two Iveco trucks.

The Ivecos are rigged up to two magnificent new Houghton Parkhouse trailers, which were purchased directly from the company’s Cumbria headquarters in the UK.

“We bought them just before Specto in Fermoy were announced as the new Houghton Parkhouse agents for the Republic of Ireland. Having a dealership so close to us is great from a maintenance and parts point of view. The English, to be fair to them, have always built a great trailer and the Houghton Parkhouse bodies are no exception. One of the trailers is a 45ft double-decker which can carry up to 45 cows and the other is a 35ft single-decker which can carry up to 20 cows.

“We also have a triple-decker Pezzaioli body attached to one of the Volvos which is suitable for the transportation of pigs, calves and sheep. Our trucks are serviced by Dennehy Trucks in Carrigtwohill.”

Michael’s team of drivers are his son Shane and Martin ‘Frank’ Heffernan. They are fully insured to transport all types of livestock and are familiar with the locations of farms, marts and factories, ensuring fast and efficient transportation. They are also highly-skilled when it comes to handling livestock.

Animal welfare has always been a priority for Michael. Transporting live animals requires special attention and he ensures that, during collection and transport, they are handled carefully without causing them unnecessary distress.

“As you could imagine, animal welfare is a huge issue with us. We follow all the guidelines and regulations in this regard. Our purpose-built trailers have automatic ventilation and watering systems. They are cleaned and disinfected after every trip. Calves are bedded in sawdust rather than straw which can get very soggy and aid the spread of infection. Our journey times are generally short. We go out of our way to ensure each journey is as stress-free as possible for our livestock,” continues Michael, who reports that business hasn’t been affected by the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

In summary, Michael O’Riordan Livestock Transport is able to offer an unrivalled service because of its years of knowledge and experience in the livestock transportation industry. And customers can always be assured that their animals are transported with great care, guaranteeing a safe and comfortable journey.

Michael O’Riordan Livestock Transport
Co. Cork.

Telephone: 087 2578686

Taken from Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 7 No 6, November 2019