A five-year plan, the ‘Growing Organics’ farm monitor programme, has been launched to drive development of the sector.

The programme, launched by Minister of State Pippa Hackett, will see organic demonstration farms selected throughout the country to help farmers learn about organic farm management.

Growing Organics is backed by €150,000 in annual funding and will be rolled out by the Department of Agriculture and Teagasc.

Demonstration farms

While the department has not yet confirmed the location of the demonstration farms, it has said they will be spread geographically and that they will represent various organic farm systems.

The farms will focus on grassland management, livestock nutrition, animal health and welfare, financial management, environmental sustainability and crop management.

Minister of State for Land Use and Biodiversity Pippa Hackett (right).

The results from the activities on the demonstration farms will be made available to all farmers and researchers to significantly improve the data available on different aspects of organic farming.

“We had record attendances at our organic farm walk programme in 2022 including a national organic beef day last September.

“The organic farm walk programme has been reviewed by Teagasc and ourselves. We are certain the best approach is a farm monitoring programme to examine and report how organic farms evolve and perform over five years, particularly with regard to soil health and profit monitoring,” Minister Hackett said.


The Minister described the €150,000 spend annually on the programme, in addition to the €256m CAP funding across five years, as a key part of the infrastructure needed to support farmers converting to organics.

“Farmers need to know what are the changes required when they make the switch to organic farming. Like any farming systems, there are challenges to be overcome and these will be openly discussed and potential solutions provided to farmers as part of this programme,” she said.

The results from organic demonstration farms will be made available to all farmers. \ Philip Doyle

Teagasc director professor Frank O’Mara said the demonstration farmers will host farm walks and act as information hubs for other farms to learn from and follow.

“They will work closely with our Teagasc organic specialist team and our team of specialised organic advisors in the regions,” he said.


Events for farmers at the organic demonstration farms will be jointly run, resourced and staffed by the department, Teagasc and Bord Bia.

Information booklets will be provided to attendees and information boards will be signposted at the farm and involve presentations from Teagasc on selected topics.

In addition to these core organic information events, the six new organic advisors appointed by Teagasc in the last 12 months will organise approximately 24 farm walks across the country this year. These walks kick off on Tuesday, 4 April with full details available on the Teagasc website.

Read more

Department invests €150,000 to upskill private advisers in organic farming

Department survey exploring organic feed requirement

Converting to organic farming in Clarina