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Teagasc launches - ‘A Forest to Suit Every Farm’ booklet

Teagasc has launched a new booklet, ‘A Forest to Suit Every Farm’, which highlights innovative approaches and experiences of forest owners across Ireland.

The booklet was launched today, Friday, 19th June by Teagasc Director, Professor Gerry Boyle against the backdrop of his own developing farm forest in County Tipperary.  

The publication, developed with the support of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, provides 17 examples of how a sustainably managed forest can fit in on a farm and complement a range of farm enterprises.

Speaking at the launch of ‘A Forest to Suit Every Farm’ Professor Boyle said: “A forest enterprise can be an attractive land use option for farmers, with the potential to contribute economic environmental and social benefits. This new booklet brings together farmer case studies and their innovative approaches to farm forestry. It provides insights into their motivation for planting, their progress to date and their objectives for the future. We thank all contributors most sincerely and hope it will be an inspiration for many others”.

Dr Nuala Ní Fhlatharta, Head of the Teagasc Forestry Development Department described the increasing importance of forests in Ireland: ”There is a growing awareness of the wide range of diverse goods and services provided by farm forests to the owners and to society. Initially farmers may be attracted by the annual premiums that stabilise and enhance their overall farm incomes. They may also be motivated by the need to restructure or diversify their farm activities. As their forests mature, many are now discovering diverse benefits, ranging from economic returns, access to an on-farm timber supply, to the provision of environmental benefits and as a recreational resource for family and friends.”

Teagasc Forestry Specialist Tom Houlihan described how the booklet, ‘A Forest to Suit Every Farm’, represents an important reference document and source of information for current and future forest owners, adding: ”It highlights the rewards of timely planning, good management and pioneering approaches. In this regard, it will also be a valuable resource for providers of advisory and training services across the agrifood sector. We would like to thank Dr Richard Walsh, Teagasc Forestry Liaison Officer for his inputs and our Teagasc forestry advisory colleagues who continue to engage with farm forest owners and continue to compile excellent case studies from all corners of Ireland.”

Concluding, Dr Nuala Ni Fhlatharta further highlighted the comprehensive forestry advisory services provided by Teagasc: “The decision to plant some of your land is often a multi-faceted decision and Teagasc advisors are available to support landowners in making this decision and progressing, where appropriate, to planting. Our experienced and objective forestry advisors are available nationwide (https://www.teagasc.ie/crops/forestry/staff/) to give you the most up to date advice and information on forest establishment, forest management and on how to get the best out of your farm forest.”

A Forest to Suit Every Farm’ is available on the Teagasc website and can be downloaded here A Forest to Suit Every Farm - Farm Forest Owner Profiles or a paper copy can be requested by emailing emer.eagle@teagasc.ie with your postal address.