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Coveney invites Proposals from Trade Organisations for Promotion of Agricultural Products - 50% EU Funding Available for Successful Programmes

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD today invited Irish Trade Organisations to submit proposals to his Department by 30 September 2014 for EU co-funding of promotion campaigns in the following areas;

  •  Internal EU Markets:Sheep Meat; Fresh Fruit and Vegetables (including Potatoes); Live Plants and Products of Ornamental Horticulture; Milk and Milk Products; Organic Farming and organic products registered under Council Regulation (EEC) No 2092/91; Products registered as Geographical Indications under Commission Regulation (EU) No 1151/2012.
  •  Non EU Countries: Fresh, Chilled and Frozen Beef, Veal and Pigmeat; Milk Products; Spirit Drinks with a Geographical or Reserved Traditional Indication.

Minister Coveney stated “Over €50m in EU funding is available each year to professional producer organisations in Member States for generic promotion of farm products and for information to consumers on how they are produced. I would like to see several Trade Organisations coming forward, submitting proposals and competing for promotional funding for campaigns highlighting the quality, nutritional value and safety of EU food products”. Emphasizing that the European Commission gives priority to joint proposals from trade organisations from more than one member State, the Minister acknowledged the work previously undertaken by the Irish dairy, mushroom and farmhouse cheese sectors to secure partners and quality proposals for three year programmes, which were evaluated by his Department and then on a competitive basis by the European Commission, which approved 50% EU funding.


Concluding, the Minister said that his Department was available to advise on eligible themes and criteria for programmes, which may focus on intrinsic features and advantages of EU products, such as specific production methods, labelling, animal welfare, the environment.  Detailed conditions and criteria are available at


Notes for the editor

1.    The EU promotion and information policy aims to boost the generic product image of EU agricultural products in the eyes of consumers. Programmes are evaluated and approved by the European Commission who finance 50% of the total cost exclusive of VAT, with the balance funded by the industry.

2.    The programmes are carried out under Commission Regulation (EC) No 501/2008 and associated Regulations laying down detailed rules for the application of Council Regulation (EC) No 3/2008 on information provision and promotion measures.

3.     Ireland currently has three programmes underway:

 Milk Promotion – ‘Milk, a force of nature’: This three year dairy programme commenced in January 2013, and     was developed by seven Member States – Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Ireland and United Kingdom (Northern Ireland). The aim of the programme is to increase milk consumption based on the concept of the nutrient richness of milk.  The programme has a combined budget of €16m, of which approx €800,000 is managed by The National Dairy Council.

 Cheese Promotion – ‘Discover Farmhouse Cheese’: This programme commenced in July 2013 and will run for three years in the Netherlands, Ireland and Germany.  The aim is to increase the consumption of farmhouse cheese and dairy products with all age groups particularly women and children.  The programme has a total budget of €1.4m, of which approx €300,000 is co-ordinated by Bord Bia.

Mushroom Promotion – ‘Just Add Mushrooms’: This three year €2.7m programme commenced in July 2013 and is a follow-on from the successful ‘More to Mushrooms’ promotion which has been expanded to target both Ireland and the United Kingdom. The programme aims to communicate the nutritional and culinary benefits of mushrooms to women aged 25-45 years and also to health professionals, mass caterers and children in educational establishments.

4.     The scheme is currently under review. The new regulatory framework proposed by the European Commission provides for a higher budget allocation, simplified procedures, a new agency to manage the area and the promotion of seafood products as part of a ‘basket of food’ approach. The new regime will come into effect on 1 January 2016.


Date Released: 04 July 2014