Minister Martin Heydon launches report on ‘Sustainable Transition of the Rural Economy through Generational Renewal’

Thursday, May 23, 2024 - 08:15

Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with special responsibility for research and innovation, Martin Heydon T.D, today launched a Department funded research report titled ‘Sustainable Transition of the Rural Economy Through Generational Renewal’, at Maynooth University.

Dr Michael Hayden and Dr Bridget McNally from Maynooth University, along with Anne Kinsella from Teagasc, led this research project over the past two years.

An aging farming population is a major concern to the sustainability of the rural economy in Ireland. Prior research has identified the strongest barriers to innovation in agriculture are at farm level, and relate to business structures, lack of land mobility and aging farmers.

In this context, through a combination of desk-based research, interviews with farmers and agricultural advisors, and a survey of farmers, the dual roles of collaborative farming and retirement income provisioning in facilitating generational renewal was comprehensively explored.

Launching the report, Minister Heydon, said: “Attracting the next generation of farmers is crucial to securing the future of Irish agriculture. This important research funded by my Department looks at many of challenges and barriers to succession and importantly explores potential solutions.

“Ireland currently provides important supports for generational renewal through the tax system and the Common Agricultural Policy. This is an area that is under constant review and the findings of this project will be carefully considered by my Department.”

The full report can be viewed here: Sustainable Transition of the Rural Economy through Generational Renewal