Minister of State of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Senator Pippa Hackett is this week leading a major trade mission to Germany with Bord Bia to promote organic Irish food and drink. The visit commences on Monday in Berlin and moves to Nuremberg on Tuesday and Wednesday for the BIOFACH trade fair, the world’s largest organic trade fair where a number of Irish organic companies are participating.
Minister Hackett commented;
“This is a very exciting time in the Irish organic food and drink sector and this visit continues my mission to secure new market opportunities for our produce around the world. This Government’s commitment to the organic sector is backed up by our €256m commitment to a new organic farming scheme – a five-fold increase on the previous scheme.
I was delighted that we had over 2,000 new applications from farmers for the Organic Farming scheme for 2023. I can confirm this week that all eligible applicants will be accepted into the scheme immediately. Applicants will this week receive their approval which will provide them with a five-year Organic Farming Scheme contract commencing on 1 January 2023. This significant investment by Government in our organic sector with a target of reaching 10% of all land farmed organically by 2030 is hugely ambitious but we are making real progress already”.
BIOFACH is part of a strong global network of Organic trade fairs which also take place in the USA, Brazil, China, India, Thailand, Saudi Arabia and Japan. A key theme of BIOFACH is to promote how organics can become even more influential as a model for the future and a key driver of sustainable food production.
Minister Hackett concluded;
“A crucial step in our organic journey is driving new market opportunities for Irish organic produce. This is why I’m leading this trade mission to Germany this week. The presence of many Irish Organic companies at BIOFACH is a resounding vote of confidence in the quality and ambition of our organic Irish produce. There are 25,000 visitors and buyers from more than 100 countries expected here and I want to make sure that as large an audience as possible hear the Irish organic message.”
Jim O’ Toole, Bord Bia CEO and newly appointed Bord Bia Organic Sector Manager Emmet Doyle, will also take part in the Trade Mission to BIOFACH. Speaking at BIOFACH, Jim O’Toole, Bord Bia Chief Executive said:
“Over the past 12 months, Bord Bia has intensified its investment in this important sector to support the increased commitment to organics at farm level. BIOFACH has long played a central role in Bord Bia’s promotional and business development activity, and we are again supporting Irish organic producers with a dedicated Origin Green Ireland stand playing host to eight companies spanning multiple sectors. As the most important trade event for organics, BIOFACH is a crucial platform to assist companies in building export markets.
Emmet Doyle, Bord Bia’s Organic Sector Manager, along with our colleagues in Bord Bia’s German office are working with the exhibiting Irish companies here to provide supports and on-the-ground insights to during the show and throughout the year. I wish all the companies a very successful BIOFACH and thank Minister Pippa Hackett for officially opening the Ireland stand.”
In addition to BIOFACH, the Minister will also attend a series of bi-lateral meetings at the Bundestag in Berlin prior to BIOFACH. A further series of meetings are planned during the BIOFACH conference with retailers, processors and the food service industry representatives to promote the Irish organic food brand.