Dept of Agriculture Food Wise 2025

Update and progress of the five themes of Food Wise 2025

“Over 1,100 Knowledge Transfer Groups comprising almost 20,000 farmers are now established.”

Sustainability:

  • BurrenLIFE Programme was a winner of the EU LIFE Nature award following a public vote. It was nominated as one of the top five projects in the Nature and Biodiversity category to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the LIFE Programme which has been supporting Environment and Climate actions in the EU since its inception in May 1992. The BurrenLIFE Programme has been tremendously successful in pioneering alternative approaches to sustainable management of high nature value farmland in the Burren region. This project has now been successfully transferred and adapted as a flagship locally-led Scheme under Ireland’s Rural Development Programme funded by DAFM. There are now over 200 participants in the Programme with a further intake planned for later in 2017.

  • DAFM prepared agriculture and forest sector mitigation measures for input to the National Mitigation Plan.

  • 585 companies, accounting for almost 95% of food and drink exports, have registered to take part in the Origin Green programme

  • Health & wellness is now a mandatory target in the sustainability elements of Origin Green.

  • Teagasc published the ‘Green Book’ containing soil specific nutrient advice.

Human Capital:

  • DAFM and DJEI launched the 2017 Report of Future Skills Needs in the Food and Drinks Sector in April.

  • DAFM held a Workshop on Skills Needs at farm level in April

  • Teagasc’s Level 6 course in pig production will commence in September.

  • Over 1,100 Knowledge Transfer Groups comprising almost 20,000 farmers are now established.

Competitiveness:

  • Agriculture Cashflow Support Loan Scheme, which was developed by DAFM in co-operation with the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI), making €150 million in working capital loans available to farmers at interest rates of 2.95%.

  • Teagasc continues to develop its ‘Option Plus’ programme for improving off-farm income generation.

  • The new Succession Farm Partnership register was launched in June 2017.

  • ‘Financial Instruments’ (FIs) are being considered for inclusion in the Rural Development Programme. An ex-ante assessment to assess any current market failures in the access to finance market, which is a first step in introducing FIs, is progressing.

Market Development:

  • DAFM’s seven point plan to increase international Market Access:

    1. Establishment of a High-Lev el Market Access Committee within the Department reporting directly to the Secretary General.

    2. The allocation of additional mark et access resources in the Department.

    3. The Department will commission Bord Bia to undertake market profiling exercise for potential third-country and EU markets for Irish exports.

    4. An intensified progr amme of trade missions to promote Irish food and drink on EU and third country markets:

    5. An immediate review of existing export markets in which conditions of certification present barriers to trade or additional costs for exporters.

    6. Incr eased engagement with the European Commission on measures to encourage a common approach to resolving issues relating to market access for EU products internationally.

    7. The development by the Department of a new dedicated portal website which will bring together in the one location the full range of open markets and products, and the relevant conditions certification in a user-friendly manner for exporters

  • A €3.75 million Bord Bid campaign to promote Irish beef and lamb in China, Japan and Hong Kong.

  • In December, the Irish Whiskey Tourism strategy, developed on an all-island basis by the Irish Whiskey Association, was launched.

Innovation:

  • The European Innovation Partnerships Initiative (EIP) forms part of RDP 2014-2020. It held an open call for proposals addressing key challenges in the agri-food sector. The first stream is focused on farm viability, economic performance, sustainable forest management and innovative technologies. The second stream is focused on challenges related to environmental, biodiversity and climate change issues.

  • Enterprise Ireland created a Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and innovation portal www.smartfoodireland.com to improve connectivity across the Irish innovation system for food and drinks companies.

  • €28 million in research grants was awarded by DAFM to 19 different national institutions and organisation to undertake work across 43 projects.

  • DAFM became a partner of a SUSFOOD (Sustainable Food Production and Consumption) - an EU Cofund European Research Area-Network consortium that launched in January.