Minister announces commitment to extending the current EIPs for another year
The Minister of State in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Senator Pippa Hackett, today opened the EIP-AGRI workshop at the Burren Winterage School in Kinvara, Co Galway. The workshop is reviewing the lessons learned from the locally led schemes funded by the Minister’s Department under the Rural Development Plan.
The Minister said:
“The EIPs have been a great success story here in Ireland. We saw there was a need for another way of delivering schemes on a more targeted basis and the results have been excellent. We now have 57 locally-led schemes run by my Department from small-scale community biodiversity projects to the much larger Hen Harrier project. All are making huge contribution to improving our environment which is only possible due to the wonderful commitment of the farmers and project teams involved in these EIPs.”
Brendan Dunford from the Burren Beo Trust commented
“The Winterage festival is a lovely coming together of farmers, scientists, and anyone with an interest in sustainable farming, to share ideas and inspiration. The gathering of EIP-AGRI projects on Friday is a chance to celebrate the impact of this rich range of innovative projects across Ireland and to harvest learnings from them to help inform the new CAP Strategic Plan. Then the Farming for Nature day on Saturday is a chance to hear from farmers on the ground and to share their knowledge and love of farming and of nature – these farmers are shaping a really positive new narrative around farming and the environment.”
The Minister also took the opportunity to announce her commitment to an extension to a number of the current EIP Projects where they are due to finish in the next year.
Commenting on the extension, Minister Hackett said:
“the next CAP is going to take a lot of the targeted approach from these EIPs and apply them at scale next time around. Before we get there though I want to make sure the current EIPs can finish out their work as lot of effort has been put into forming commonage groups, restoring habitats, eradicating invasive species for example. A break in this chain would be detrimental for the landscape, biodiversity and farmers committed to these projects. My Department will be working now with the relevant schemes to gauge their interest in extending their work and on how best to implement it”.
Note for Editors
The Burren Winterage School is an annual learning and networking event which welcomes farmers, researchers, policymakers and others to come together to share updates and ideas. The theme of this year’s event is “Carrying Forward our Lesson Learned”
Press and Information Office
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Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine