Emerald Isle’s Eco-Warriors Scoop Prestigious Agriculture Innovation Prize!

"Irish Project Wins Top Honor at EIP-AGRI Innovation Awards in Portugal"

Illaun Farm-Forest Alliance, a project based in Co. Clare, was honored with a prestigious award in the sustainable forest management category at the EIP-AGRI Innovation Awards held in Estoril, Portugal, on May 7. Among the three Irish nominees, the project stood out for its dedication to transforming farm forestry practices in Ireland. Ray Ó Foghiú, the project lead, expressed his delight at receiving recognition in Portugal, emphasizing the quality of other entrants and the importance of sharing knowledge with farmers.

He highlighted the challenges facing the forestry sector in Ireland, noting that they are predominantly cultural, informational, and reputational rather than financial. By focusing on innovation in these areas, the Illaun Farm-Forest Alliance aims to pave the way for sustainable forestry practices. The project’s success in engaging farmers in licensed woodland creation showcases the potential for positive change with the right support.

The EIP-AGRI Innovation Awards recognized the alliance for its pioneering efforts in promoting habitat restoration, biodiversity enhancement, and community engagement within the forestry sector. Through collaborative partnerships with farmers, the project has implemented various measures such as fencing, strategic planting, and understory enhancement. These initiatives have led to the issuance of afforestation licenses, the planting of thousands of trees, and the successful overcoming of initial skepticism from landowners.

James Claffey of CAP Network Ireland commended the Illaun Farm-Forest Alliance on its remarkable achievements, emphasizing the importance of collaboration and innovation in addressing agricultural challenges. The project’s success underscores its commitment to sustainability and the power of collective action in driving positive change. The recognition at the EIP-AGRI Innovation Awards highlights the significance of such initiatives in advancing agricultural practices.

The EIP-AGRI Innovation Awards, organized by the EU CAP Network, featured six categories acknowledging innovative projects in agriculture and rural policy. The network serves as a platform for sharing knowledge and information among national CAP networks, organizations, administrations, researchers, entrepreneurs, and practitioners. The Illaun Farm-Forest Alliance’s award in sustainable forest management exemplifies the impact of collaborative efforts in driving positive change within the agricultural sector.

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons is the founder of Forestry & Carbon. Matt has over 25 years as a forestry consultant and is invoilved in numerous carbon credit offset projects.

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