The Macra na Feirme and FBD Trust Land Mobility Service has now been involved in over 400 collaborative farming arrangements covering 35,000ac since its inception in 2014.

The initiative has reportedly enjoyed significant growth over the past year, supporting over 100 arrangements.

Collaborative farming arrangements include share farming, partnerships, long-term leases and farm-to-farm arrangements such as contract rearing, according to Macra.

These arrangements are between two or more people with the goal of being beneficial for all involved, as well as helping to deliver access to land, it explained.

In a statement, Macra said: “The key innovative element of the Land Mobility Service has been its role as an expert independent facilitator in brokering such arrangements, coupled with finding potential suitable collaborators.

Long-term leasing is the most popular arrangement in the Land Mobility Service; however, share farming and partnership-style arrangements have grown in popularity in the past year.

“The service has found that many landowners like shared arrangements because it allows them to remain involved on the farm and retain their farmer status, while for young farmers it reduces the level of finance they may require to get their business up and running.”

‘Many great success stories’

The reason why this initiative works for people is because it keeps those involved at the heart of any arrangement, according to the programme manager of the Land Mobility Service, Austin Finn.

Finn works with people to develop an arrangement that is both fair and sustainable in order to reach an agreement that suits all parties.

Speaking about the growth of the initiative, he said: “I can categorically say that we have been able to find an opportunity for any young person with the skills, flexibility and desire to make it happen.

There are many great success stories out there for both landowners and young farmers. This is a unique time that is providing opportunities for young people.

The Land Mobility Service has worked closely with its aligned dairy co-ops – Dairygold, Aurivo and Glanbia – and has been involved in many arrangements in their catchment areas, Macra added.

The service will continue to align with more industry partners as it moves to a full nationwide platform with continued support from the FBD Trust, the farm organisations and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Anyone who wishes to find out more about the service is asked to contact Austin Finn on: 086-2541425. Alternatively, an email can be sent to: [email protected].