This week’s episode of Farmland features a sit-down interview with Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) Pippa Hackett, who discusses the delays in forestry licensing, farm solar PV and the uptake of the Organic Farming Scheme.

In the episode, which will be broadcast tomorrow (June 6) at 7:00p.m, Minister Hackett speaks to Agriland editor Stella Meehan about the issuing of forestry licenses and the backlogs being experienced by many in the industry.

Explaining that it is unlikely the annual targets will be met this year, the minister outlines that the DAFM is currently in the process of redesigning the licensing system to alleviate the issue.

“We’ve certainly increased the number of ecologists by many tens and the resource implications were massive so we have dealt with that as well.

“I’d love to get that back on a track that it can deliver because the targets there are really substantial.”

Also on the programme, Minister Hackett speaks about rooftop solar PV and the current legislation which does not allow farmers who have installed panels using funding from the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS), to export excess energy back to the national grid.

The minister also discusses the recent announcement from the government that grants and supports under the Micro-generation Support Scheme (MGSS), are set to be phased out over the next ten years.

Throughout the episode, the minister also speaks about alternative methods for green waste disposal as well as the lower than anticipated uptake of the Organic Farming Scheme.

The latest episode and podcast of Farmland will go live tomorrow on the Agriland platform. All episodes can be streamed via the award-winning digital platform,, and links will also be available across Agriland social media platforms.

All episodes of Farmland can be viewed by clicking here.