FRUIT and vegetable- growers, mushroom- growers, beekeepers, protected crop and nursery crop farmers are among the 157 horticultural producers who will benefit from the new €4.1 million 2011 Scheme of Investment Aid for the Development of the Commercial Horticulture Sector.
This capital funding was unveiled yesterday by Shane McEntee, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, who said the aid will assist in funding investments of €10.2m between now and the end of this year.
Mr McEntee said: “Horticulture industry contributed €280m to agricultural output in 2010 and provides 5,000 jobs nationally, with many further jobs being generated in distribution, processing and marketing. It’s vital that the industry receives support to allow it maintain and further increase its contribution to the Irish economy.”
Mr McEntee also formally opened the Irish Forestry, Woodland and Bio Energy Show at Birr Castle demesne, Birr, Co Offaly. Organised jointly by the Department and the Irish Timber Growers Association, the event provided information on EU timber trade regulations, as well as Irish forests, wildlife, biodiversity, recreation and carbon sequestration.
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