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“Strength in Numbers” - National Forest Owner Groups Conference

Details of the National Forest Owner Groups Conference were announced on the Teagasc stand at the national ploughing championships in Laois today Wednesday 25 September. Tom Hayes TD, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with responsibility for forestry, launched the conference, which takes place at the Ballykisteen Hotel near Tipperary Town on Tuesday, 8 October 2013.

This Conference is organised by Teagasc in conjunction with the Limerick Tipperary Woodland Owners (LTWO). This is the fifth year that the Teagasc Forestry Development Department has held such an event. All forest owners, including those not involved in owner organisations, are invited. This conference will provide an important forum for attendees to share experiences and acquire valuable information to help in their forest enterprise.

The theme of this year’s event is “strength in numbers” and reflects one of Teagasc’s objectives in establishing forest owner groups encouraging active forest owner cooperation and participation.

The first session will focus specifically on the forest owner groups. Teagasc Forestry Development Officer Michael Somers will give a presentation on the potential role of forest owner groups while Michael Ryan, LTWO chairman, will outline the process of group thinning. Niall Morrissey will outline Leader Development Company involvement and Paul Kennedy will discuss Danone’s interest in purchasing timber from forest owner groups.

The second session will focus on issues that may affect all forest owners. John Phelan (Woodland Insurance) will discuss forest insurance. Edward Wall (Health & Safety Authority) will focus on safety in the forest, while Declan McEvoy (IFAC) will focus on forestry taxation.

The event will be chaired by Nuala Ni Fhlatharta (Teagasc); Michael Ryan (LTWO) and Donal Magner (Wood Marketing Federation / Farmers Journal). There will be networking opportunities with a number of companies and organisations.