Regenerative family farming at the heart of the rural economy

Regenerative Farming Ireland is determined to see that the family farm is central to the future well-being of rural Ireland. It must also be central to the rural economy. It should be a provider of on-farm employment [for the family or otherwise] and it should also be a provider of raw materials for local processing [to create income and employment]. A vibrant, non-foods economy is also needed to, in turn, support family farms. And all of this has to be done while sympathetically managing Ireland's natural resources, restoring its biodiversity, and maintaining its landscapes.

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Farming is about being a custodian of natural resources, landscapes and biodiversity. It is about using these responsibly. The multi-generational family farm is seen as an ideal way to manage land but they need to be viable so to regenerate themselves.

A sustainable future for the family farm is about linking farms to local food processing and the premium-paying consumer so as to improve farm incomes. It is also about rural jobs to provide off-farm income. It is about a dynamic rural economy.

With a historic focus on commodity sales has Irish farming become over reliant on EU payments to provide income to the farm household? As a consequence, our aim is to help farmers to move into supply chains linked to premium-foods markets. 

The transition to having sustainable family farms will require changes on farm and in the supply-chain. After years of neglecting premium-value consumer products, investment is needed on farm and in new supply chains and this will need grant aid.

© 2019 Regenerative Farming Ireland

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