The Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine will resume its discussion on organic farming this week.

Taking place tomorrow (Tuesday, June 22), from 3:30p.m, representatives from Teagasc and Bord Bia will present at the first half of the meeting, while representatives from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine will attend the second session.

Last week, the committee heard from the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), the Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association (INHFA), the Irish Organic Association (IOA) and the Organic Growers of Ireland (OGI).

Making organic farming more sustainable

Speaking in advance of the meeting, committee chairman Jackie Cahill said the members look forward to “getting some up-to-date data” and having a discussion on the important issues around the Organic Farming Scheme (OFS) with the department.

He said the discussion with Teagasc and Bord Bia will look to “explore the changes that could be made to encourage more uptake in organic farming and promote organic food to consumers”.

“The committee welcomes further conversation around the organic sector, where Ireland is placed in the sector and if there are certain areas we should be looking at to make organic farming more sustainable and attractive to traditional farmers such as awareness, training and education, policy changes and extra supports,” deputy Cahill added.

The Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine has 14 members – nine from the Dáil and five from the Seanad. For anyone interested in viewing the meeting, it will take place in Committee Room 3 on the Oireachtas website.

Joint Committee on Environment and Climate Action

Also tomorrow, the Joint Committee on Environment and Climate Action will meet to resume discussions on reducing Ireland’s carbon emissions by 51% by 2030, looking at the challenges, opportunities and changes that may be required in agriculture.

Representatives of Macra na Feirme: Denis Duggan, CEO; Derrie Dillon, head of advocacy, membership and policy; and Gillian Richardson, agricultural and rural affairs policy officer, along with Dr. Oliver Moore of University College Cork (UCC) will be present at the meeting.

It will take place at 12:30p.m in Committee Room 1.