Donegal farmer Ross Buchanan has been announced as the winner of the 2020 RDS Teagasc Farm Forestry Award.

The Carndonagh sheep farmer manages 48 hectares of diverse woodlands planted on an outlying farm in 2006. This has opened up new opportunities for farm diversification, and as such forestry is now very much an important part of the farm.

Buchanan said: “Trees were once an integral part of Inishowen's heritage. Restoring some measure of the biodiversity and scenic value of woodland to promote the peninsula is something I would love to see in my lifetime.”


RDS chief executive Michael Duffy said: “It is now more important than ever to recognise the work of our farmers and foresters, who are contributing to the sustainable development of Irish agriculture.”

Usually presented in the RDS Concert Hall as part of the annual Spring Livestock and Forestry Awards, this year due to COVID-19 restrictions, the award was presented to Buchanan on his farm and forest.

Ross Buchanan, winner of the 2020 RDS Teagasc Farm Forestry Award.

Receiving the Special Commendation Award in the 2020 RDS Teagasc Farm Forestry category is Patrick Rhatigan, Roosky, Co Roscommon.

Director of Teagasc Professor Gerry Boyle said: “This award recognises farmers like Buchanan and Rhatigan who are achieving sustainable integration of their forestry and farming enterprises.

“This will help farming families, and the communities in which they live, to build resilience by optimising the many economic, environmental, practical and social benefits that can accrue from farms and forests working together.”

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