€14m allocated to new research projects
A total of 23 research projects, including ones based on livestock sustainability, welfare and biosecuirty in farmed animals and sustainable pesticide use have received funding from the Department.

Over €14m has been allocated to 23 research projects by the Department of Agriculture.

Announcing the awards at a briefing in Dublin today, Minister Michael Creed said: “The projects being funded by my Department will make a significant contribution to the future sustainability, innovation and competitiveness of the Irish agri food sector”.

The investment across the 23 projects will create 71 contract research positions. Furthermore, education opportunities will be provided for 57 post graduate students in the form of PhDs (47) and Masters degrees (10).

Agri-focused projects

The funds are allocated under three separate programmes, with one branch focusing on food research, another on agriculture and one on forestry.

Under the agriculture branch six projects received funding:

  • Future proofing Irish livestock sustainability (UCD): €1,243,000
  • Cadium: reduce, evaluate, detect, inform with technologies (Teagasc) €1,165,000
  • Protecting terrestrial ecosystems through sustainable pesticide use (NUIG): €1,085,000
  • Surveillance welfare and biosecurity of farmed animals (Teagasc): €772,000
  • Evaluating land use and land management impacts on soil organic carbon in Irish agricultural systems (Teagasc): €598,000
  • Behaviours for safer farming (Teagasc): €595,000
  • Co-funding

    Part of the funding for the Future proofing Irish livestock sustainability project came from the Department of Agriculture in Northern Ireland. Minister Creed welcomed this “as an excellent example of the successful collaborative approach of the administrations, north and south, working together in an important policy area which is of mutual benefit”.

    In addition, Evaluating land use and land management impacts on soil organic carbon in Irish agricultural systems is being co-funded by the EPA.

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    The farmer's daily wrap: ATM thefts, BPS and silage 2019
    Here is your news round-up of the five top farming stories and weather outlook for Saturday 20 April.

    Weather forecast

    Saturday is forecast to be a warm and dry day, with sunshine developing after clearance of mist and fog.

    Met Éireann has said that it will stay cloudy in Connacht and west and north Ulster, with some light rain or drizzle there along the coast.

    Afternoon temperatures will range between 15°C and 16°C in the northwest to between 17°C and 22°C elsewhere.

    In the news

  • A tractor, low-loader and digger were used in the early hours of Friday to rob two ATMs in Kells, Co Meath.
  • Vigilante animal activists could face up to 12 months in prison for sharing personal information which allows them to target and trespass on farms, if the current Australian government is re-elected.
  • Over 55,000 farmers have applied to date to the Over 55,000 BPS applications made to date" target="_blank">2019 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS).
  • Representatives from FBD have blamed the cost of high insurance premiums ‘Cost of insurance is too high’ – FBD" target="_blank">on people who are too willing to make insurance claims and the Irish legal system, which is too generous with pay-outs.
  • The annual silage harvest at Dublin Airport began on Thursday.
  • Coming up this Saturday

  • Good week/bad week.
  • The connection between passport applications and BPS applications.
    Fire-fighters battling huge gorse fire in Donegal
    Two houses have already been taken by the blaze, which is raging in the Annagry area of the county.

    Fire-fighters and locals in the Annagry area of Donegal are fighting a gorse fire which has destroyed two homes in the area.

    The Donegal Daily reports that eight units of Donegal fire brigade are battling the blaze.

    It also reports that locals are fighting the fire.

    The Malin Coast Guard is helping to assess the area currently being covered by the fire.

    One Twitter user tweeted an image of smoke from the fire earlier today.

    The fire comes following a a condition orange fire warning, which called on forest owners, farmers and rural dwellers to be vigilant over the bank holiday weekend for fires.

    There is a high risk of fires this weekend as a result of easterly high pressure conditions and forecast high temperatures.

    These conditions mean that a high fire risk exists in all areas where hazardous fuels such as gorse, heather, dried grasses and other dead vegetation exist.

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    In pictures: 2019 silage season takes off at Dublin Airport
    The annual silage harvest at the country’s busiest airport began on Thursday.

    Tractors and mowers were called into action to kick off the 2019 silage season at Dublin Airport on Thursday.

    Over 200ac of silage will be made at the country’s largest airport over the next two days, according to Ciarán Hoey, one of the tractor drivers on the job.

    A team of seven drivers was operating the fleet of butterfly mowers, a harvester, six trailers and Massey Ferguson tractors to make silage in the short time window.

    “With security being very strict, it will be a highly co-ordinated harvest,” explained Hoey.

    The grass will be drawn a short distance to a nearby farmer for pit silage.

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    Watch: Silage 2017 kicks off in Dublin Airport

    Easter weekend: hazy with highs of 23°C in parts