Hosted by open eir’s Orla Coughlan, the discussion focused on the many career opportunities are exist in rural Ireland and showed that dynamic careers are available outside of urban areas.

Denise O’Callaghan worked in investment banking in London for five years before she got the chance to pursue her dream. She set up her family own-business eight years ago – a gluten-free bakery.

Ronan Byrne, also known as the ‘Friendly Farmer’ returned to Ireland in 2007 having worked as dairy manager on a 1,300-acre farm in Poland.

Working on such a large farm made Ronan have a rethink on how he viewed his own 35acre farm in Athenry. It hammered home the value of his farm, with a population of 100,000 within a 20km radius.

He started researching everything from energy crops to buffalo mozzarella. But it wasn’t until he read a statistic that he made up his mind.

“I read that the average person will eat 500 chickens in their lifetime. So, the penny finally dropped.”

Ronan said growing up he was always told it’s impossible to “make a proper living out of farming. That never sat well with me”.

He returned almost a decade ago, invested in 75 chicks and started The Friendly Farmer.

“I just wanted to prove that it could be done. I wanted to be able to live in the community that I was brought up in and the way we farm has enabled me to do that. I’m married here, I have two kids, another on the way, and my parents live over the road.”

Eleanor Meade works with the Meade Potato Company in Co Meath. After working in accounting for 11 years, she decided to return to her family-run business where she is now business operating manager.

She says says getting the job takes initiative and having knowledge of the area.

“It’s all about work experience so get out there and get that summer job,” says Eleanor.

Host Orla Coughlan says “there are no limits when you are Irish and you have a desire to succeed. Being Irish opens up a huge opportunity for you around the world. You have to live it to experience it”.

If you’re looking for a job, pick up a copy of the Irish Farmers Journal this Thursday! There were 1,120 jobs on offer at the Irish Farmers Journal and open eir Agri Careers Fair last week. The jobs wall on display at the event is replicated over seven pages in this week’s Irish Country Living supplement.

Not all of these roles have been filled yet, so make sure you get in touch with employers straight away: contact details are included in the jobs wall for each.

Read more

All about Eleanor Meade's career change

For Full coverage: Agri Careers Fair