The competition is now open for entries from newcomers to farming, successors and farmers who have diversified their enterprise.

New entrants bring innovation and entrepreneurialism, as well as practical skills and networks. However, they face considerable challenges in entering the sector. The NEWBIE network addresses the challenge of enabling new entrants to successfully establish sustainable farm businesses in Europe. Sustaining a cohort of new entrants is crucial for the agricultural sector and rural regions in Europe.

If you are a newcomer to farming, a successor or have diversified your enterprise, this competition is for you.

Who can enter?

The competition is open to newcomers to farming, successors and farmers who have diversified their enterprise.

Application forms will be assessed and applicants shortlisted. The judging panel will visit the farms of shortlisted applicants to discuss the farm enterprise, business model etc, and an overall winner will then be selected. Closing date for entry is 12 midnight on Monday 3 October 2022.

Prize Details

The Teagasc NEWBIE new entrant to agriculture competition is a great opportunity for successful new entrants to gain recognition for their work and to promote their business. The prize includes a €1,000 cash prize kindly sponsored by AIB, a mentoring programme to the value of €1,000, kindly provided by Enterprise Ireland, a plaque for display on-farm and the development of a video featuring the winning farmer.

For further information and to enter, please go to

What is the NEWBIE project?

The NEWBIE network is an EU Horizon 2020-funded project with 10 European partners. NEWBIE offers a unique platform by bringing together new entrants, successors, advisers, researchers, important regional and national actors and relevant stakeholders in national networks, with the aim of enabling new entrants to successfully establish a sustainable farm business in Europe.

New entrants are defined in the NEWBIE network as anyone who starts a new farm business or becomes involved in an existing farm business at any stage of their lives. New entrants across sectors and regions face common barriers such as access to land, capital, knowledge and labour.

2021 Competition Winner

Cucumber growers Welgro Produce, located in Rush, Co Dublin, were selected as the winners of the third Irish NEWBIE new entrant competition. Welgro, established by Shane Halpin, Sean Weldon and Gary Weldon is one of only two commercial cucumber growers in Ireland. The local trio identified an opportunity to develop a business utilising glasshouses that had been unused since the owner’s retirement. They now tend to over 20,000 cucumber plants in glasshouses that span over three acres.

Shane, who has a background in horticulture and mechanics, Sean with an accounting and processing background and Gary, who has an agricultural degree, share the management responsibilities. The company employs up to 15 people at peak times in the areas of grading/picking, packing and distribution.

Read more about Welgro Produce and other winners at