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Minister Sargent Welcomes Commitment in Programme for Government to Support Organic Farming

Trevor Sargent TD, Minister for Food and Horticulture at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food has welcomed the commitment in the new Programme for Government to ensure that resources are provided to continue support for organic farming. The Organic Farming Scheme will provide for payments to farmers, and the capital schemes of grant aid provides support for both on-farm and off-farm investment.

"This firm commitment should encourage farmers who might be considering the organic option for the first time to take it a step further and prepare to apply for support in 2010", Minister Sargent said. "In particular, they should now consider taking up the opportunity to attend the training courses organised by Teagasc which will be a requirement for entry to the Organic Farming Scheme when it reopens in January 2010."

Note for Editors:

The relevant part of the new Programme for Government reads as follows:

Ensure the achievement of the target of 5% of land in organic agriculture and meet the growing demand for domestically produced organic produce by providing adequate resources and supports for the achievement of the target, with a focus on import substitution in areas where Ireland is under producing at present e.g. horticulture. Beginning in 2010, and rising in subsequent years, stepping up supports for the Organic Farming Scheme for conversion to organic production, Capital Grants for the Organic Sector and Non-Capital costs.

Date Released: 16 October 2009