Glanbia Ireland and its farm family suppliers have achieved their ‘Operation Biodiversity’ target of planting 100,000 native trees and hedgerow plants, one year ahead of schedule.
To celebrate its sustainability commitment and to mark the significant decision taken by Glanbia Co-op to take full ownership of Glanbia Ireland, 10,000 potted native trees are being provided free to farm family suppliers and customers through the network of CountryLife Garden Centres along with the local branch in Athboy, Co. Meath.
John Murphy, chairman of Glanbia Ireland and Glanbia Co-op said: “Our farm family suppliers have demonstrated strong commitment to sustainability action by embracing the Operation Biodiversity initiative with great gusto.
“We pledged to plant 100,000 native trees and hedgerows in two years. It was one of several on-farm commitments also included in our ‘Living Proof’ sustainability strategy. Today, we are delighted to report we have reached this target – a full year ahead of schedule.
“Our farm family suppliers and customers have embraced this initiative and joined us on our Living Proof sustainability journey. Our co-op members have also taken the really positive decision to acquire full ownership of Glanbia Ireland,” he added.
“This will ensure that we continue to better serve our communities, farmers and colleagues for this generation and the next generation to come.”
Where to get trees
The 10,000 free native trees include alder, birch, crab apple and oak and are available for pick up in Glanbia Ireland’s CountryLife Garden Centres.
They are also available in the Glanbia Ireland branch in Athboy, Co. Meath and the company said that the trees are limited to one potted tree per customer.
Glanbia said that in-store horticulturists are also available to discuss which variety best suits different soil types and where trees will thrive.
The latest stage of the Operation Biodiversity programme continues for 2022, according to the company.
Apart from 10,000 free trees being made available, bundles are also available for sale through the programme in an effort o encourage more biodiversity.
For every 15 native trees purchased through the Operation Biodiversity initiative at Glanbia Ireland’s CountryLife outlets or local branches, Glanbia Ireland said it will give away a further 10 for free.
Also, for every two bare root hedgerow bundles purchased, Glanbia Ireland is giving a third bundle away at no additional cost, which means farmers could sow up to 10m more of hedges.
Tree and hedgerow bundles have been grouped by soil type, ensuring everyone chooses the right variety with the best chance of flourishing for generations to come.
Glanbia said that for acidic soil, Operation Biodiversity tree bundles include alder, oak, scots pine, mountain ash and birch. For limey soil, varieties include grey willow, oak and mountain ash.
For acidic soil, hedgerow bundles include whitethorn, blackthorn and alder, as well as oak, scots pine and mountain ash. Hedgerow bundles for limey soil include a mix of whitethorn; euonymus europaeus; hazel; grey willow; oak and mountain ash.