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Organic Events

Teagasc organics advisors organise a number of activities and events throughout the year. These include:

  • Farm walks in association with Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine and organic organisations
  • 25 hour training course
  • Open days
  • Webinars.

More information on these events outlined below.

Find some advice on the Steps to Organic conversion here

Upcoming events 

Training Course - 25 hour Level 5 QQI Organic Farming Principles Course

Organic Farming Principles Courses available in the following locations:

Manorhamilton | Portlaoise | Castlerea | Tuam | Kenmare 

Upcoming Organic Farm Walk

Wednesday, 24 July  |  11am  |  Tipperary

Farm of Pat Maher, Freighduff, Cashel, Co. Tipperary. Eircode: E25 D211.

Join us on Wednesday, 24 July for an Organic Farm Walk on the farm of Pat Maher, Freighduff, Cashel, Co. Tipperary, E25 D211.

Topics to be discussed include:

  • Organic Conversion
  • Animal Health and Housing
  • Soil Fertility
  • Biodiversity
  • Forestry and Agroforestry

Growing Organics Farm Walks

The ‘Growing Organics’ Programme is a five year programme led by Teagasc, and will promote the adoption of best practice at farm level to increase the future viability and sustainability of the Irish organic sector. 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.

Organic demonstration farms have been selected throughout the country to illustrate best practice and monitor key financial and environmental metrics. Providing up to date technical advice to organic farmers is a key objective of the National Organic Strategy 2019-2025.

Upcoming Growing Organics Farm Walks

Click on the links below to find out more about the upcoming Growing Organics Farm Walks

John O'Hanlon, Ballymahon, Co. Longford

Tuesday, 24th September | 2pm

Join us on Tuesday, 24th September at 2pm for a Growing Organics Farm Walk - Suckler to Store on the farm of John O'Hanlon, Tipper, Ballymahon, Co. Longford. Eircode: N39 K0Y8.

Click here to register! 

About the farm

John O’Hanlon and his family run and organic suckler to store enterprise in Ballymahon, Co. Longford. The farm is currently in year 2 of organic conversion and comprises of 31ha of grassland and 6ha of forestry. John’s main aim after joining organics was to make a genuine attempt at running an efficient and profitable organic suckler enterprise on mixed quality land whilst working full time off farm.

The suckler enterprise comprises of 30 Limousin, Simmental and Hereford cross cows which run with a Charolais bull. The offspring are gradually sold at 15/16 months of age to give cash flow over the summer months.

Some of the changes John has carried out since joining organics involved changing his winter housing to meet the organic standards, some reseeding of old swards with ryegrass and white clover, creating additional paddocks and establishing a red clover silage sward. A lot of work has also been carried out to address soil fertility with liming being the first priority. John has always tried to make high quality silage each year so as to minimise the need for expensive organic ration.

Previous Webinars

View previous webinars on a range of organic topics and issues

Spring 2024 Webinars

The Teagasc Organics team hosted two webinars this spring on:

  • Establishment Methods for Red Clover
  • Experiences with cover crops for field-scale organic vegetable production

Watch them back below

Establishment Methods for Red Clover 

Wednesday, 7th February | 7pm

Elaine Leavy, Teagasc Organics Specialist hosted a webinar on Wednesday, 7th February which looked at establishment methods for red clover. Elaine was joined by Cathal McCauley, Specialised Organic Advisor, Teagasc; Lisa McGrane, Teagasc and Michael Egan, Teagasc Researcher.

Cathal provided an overview of Michael Edgeworth, organic farmer from County Leitrim's farm. Michael and Ann converted to organic farming just over a year ago. In June 2023, they decided to try three different ways of establishing red clover on their farm - Direct drill; power harrow; and plough. Cathal caught up with Michael to get an insight into how they got on with each establishment technique.

Lisa McGrane provided an overview of her recently completed PhD which looked at the addition of clover or herbs to a perennial ryegrass sward: effects on animal and sward performance. Lisa gave an insight into part of her research on the various establishment methods for red clover.

Michael Egan provided an overview of the role of red clover silage and gave an insight into research being carried out in Teagasc.

Watch webinar recording below

Experiences with cover crops for field-scale organic vegetable production

Wednesday, 6th March | 7pm

Elaine Leavy, Teagasc Organics Specialist hosted a webinar on Wednesday, 6th March which looked at experiences with cover crops for field-scale organic vegetable production. Elaine was joined by William Deasy, Specialised Vegetable Advisor, Teagasc and Christoffel den Herder, Senior Advisor Organic Vegetable Growing – CERES Horti Advice.

The webinar was aimed at horticultural growers and farmers who are interested in learning more about commercial organic horticulture.

Christoffel den Herder provided an insight into the reasons for growing cover crops including benefits and challenges; selecting and integrating cover crops into organic vegetable rotations; and practical experiences with establishment and management including destruction for following crops.

Watch webinar recording below

Previous Farm Walks

Organic Beef Open Day

Teagasc, Bord Bia and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) jointly organised a National Organic Beef Open Day on the farm of John Purcell, Ross, Golden, Cashel, Co. Tipperary on Wednesday, 28th September 2022.

The open day was aimed at providing up to date best practice for existing organic farmers and also will aim at providing an insight into organic farming methods for those farmers contemplating converting their farms.

John took over the running of the farm from his late father Michael Purcell in 1997. The farm had always been associated with a livestock enterprise and in 1998, John converted the farm to organic and continued with the beef model. The overall farm operation of 950 acres consists of owned and leased land and all together produces over 1000 finished beef cattle per annum for the market.

The farm walk is on a block of 500 acres. The farm produces most of the winter feed for the operation and houses 600 cattle during the winter months. Combination crops and clover grass swards are grown as part of the winter-feeding system. John’s farm does not exclusively focus  on beef production, he also has incorporated biodiversity corridors/habitats. He has also planted over 10,000 trees in the last three years to sequester carbon and is planning to claim carbon natural status by 2025.

 View the event booklet here (PDF)