Sargent sets organic land target of 5%

Food and Horticulture Minister Trevor Sargent wants 5% of agricultural land in organic production within the next four years.

Mr Sargent said he intends to bring together key industry leaders, opinion makers and agricultural academics, with some of Ireland’s top organic farmers and growers to better appreciate what organic farming is about.

Mr Sargent, who was launching his Department’s Organic Farming Action Plan 2008-2012 in Dublin, said he was committed to achieving the necessary development of the sector.

“The target of 5% of land area in organic production by 2012, set down in the Programme for Government, is indeed a challenging target but one that I believe is achievable,” he said.

He said the action plan was an important development in working towards achievement of that target.

The 60-point action plan aims to increase production in line with market trends, increase the knowledge base, develop markets at home and abroad, and encourage public procurement opportunities for organic products.

He pointed to over a 17% increase in the area under organic production since 2005, and that attractive financial incentives are available to go organic.


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