Monday, 19 May 2008


Press release from Mary Reilly

There has been a lot of negativity in the media recently about the future of Farming in Donegal, Inishowen in particular. One local paper has gone as far as saying that farming is going to ‘the wall’.

There’s good reason for this, the price of diesel has gone through the roof in recent months, and petroleum based fertilisers have doubled in price since last year. And global warming has everybody confused!

So what’s the good news? With the introduction of the Single Farm Payment, farmers now have a certain amount of freedom to experiment and look for alternatives to exclusive livestock farming. There are lots of ways to utilise farmland. Many people are talking about growing biomass willow for alternative fuel when the price of oil goes beyond what we can afford. Forestry is always another option.

But what happens when fuel prices go so high that we can’t afford to import all the food we need? At the moment, most of the food in our shops is imported. Why can’t we start looking at ways in which we can feed ourselves?

Organic Farming is fast becoming a realistic option for many farmers seeking a way to stay on the land. Now that farmers don’t have to overstock in order to get a decent headage payment, the traditional option of mixed farming can be opted for.

There is a lot of interest among consumers in getting locally produced food, and this demand can’t be met unless more farmers start producing food for the local market.

The Inishowen Organic Group, in association with the National Organic Training Skillnet (NOTS) are hosting an evening of information in McGrory’s of Culdaff on the 28th of May. Starting at 6.30pm, the evening will include a buffet meal and talks and presentations on all aspects of Organic farming, from production to outlets.

Speakers on the night will include: Elaine Leavy, Teagasc, Kevin Hickey, North West Organic, John Brennan, Leitrim Farmers co op, and Sean McGloin, NOTS. Farmers from Donegal and Derry who produce organic beef and grain will be there to talk about what they do and one to one consultations will be available free. Organic produce will be on sale from the Farm Shop, Moville and North West Organic.

Admission, including the meal is €10

For more information, go to the Inishowen Organic Group’s website or
For information on training in organic production call Sean on 086 1728442




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