600 landowners benefited from one-to-one consultations with forestry advisors

Approximately 600 landowners benefited from one-to-one consultations with a forestry advisor, according to Teagasc.

These one-to-one meetings took place, as Teagasc organised nearly 100 consultation days in January, February and March.

With a particular focus on land-owners who were considering forestry, the clinics also provided advice to those who already have a forest established.

The clinics were held in Teagasc offices around the country throughout the first three months of 2017; one-to-one consultations with an experienced forestry advisor had to be arranged by appointment.

It was hoped that these clinics would provide landowners with an opportunity to get advice on setting up or managing a forest, Head of Teagasc’s Forestry Development Department, Dr. Nuala Ni Fhlatharta, said.

“These Forestry Advisory Clinics provided by Teagasc Forestry Advisors were seen as a huge support to the farming sector, particularly to those seriously considering forestry.

By getting objective and independent advice from Teagasc, these landowners are now much better positioned to make a well-informed decision on where forests have a role to play on their farms.

“This information is essential so that forestry can be integrated with the rest of the farm thereby optimising the return to the landowner,” she said.

Forestry can have many attractions, but landowners must seek advice in order to know if it is appropriate for them, according to Teagasc.

The information provided at these Forestry Advisory Clinics can help guide landowners’ decisions about forestry as a viable enterprise and foster good management of existing forests, it added.

It is believed that the Teagasc Forestry Advisory Clinics will resume during the months of October, November and December.

Further details are expected to become available on the Teagasc website in future.

In 2017, some 7,140ha of forestry is set to be planted in Ireland under the Afforestation Programme, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, previously said.

This is the target set out in the Forestry Programme 2014–2020, he added.

Meanwhile, the allocated funding for the Forestry Programme in 2016 was €113.855m, which allowed for 6,500ha of new planting.