Entries sought for FBD Young Farmer of the Year

The 16th FBD Young Farmer of the Year competition has been launched and young farmers in Tipperary who are actively involved in the running of a farm, full or part time, are invited to apply.

The 16th FBD Young Farmer of the Year competition has been launched and young farmers in Tipperary who are actively involved in the running of a farm, full or part time, are invited to apply.

A county winner will be chosen who will go through to the all-Ireland final in September. The competition was launched by organisers, Macra na Feirme, sponsors FBD and partners, the IFA.

Macra National President, Kieran O’Dowd, said: “We’re calling on all ambitious young farmers to enter the 16th FBD Young Farmer of the Year competition and use it as a springboard for their future career. By taking part you’ll learn what other young farmers are doing, where you can improve and how you can be one of Ireland’s top young farmers. This is a prestigious competition which recognises the drive, ambition and hard work of the young farmers working in the sector today. Farming, in a new CAP era and with quota abolition in the near future, is an exciting industry full of opportunity.”

FBD Company Secretary, Conor Gouldson, said: “This showcase event is now in its 16th year and is testament to FBD’s unwavering commitment to supporting Ireland’s next generation of farmers. We are really delighted to continue our involvement with Macra na Feirme and the IFA in this annual search for Ireland’s best and most progressive young farming talent. This is an exciting but crucial time for those young farmers who aim to expand their farms to meet the growing global demand for top quality Irish produce. FBD is delighted that its brand ambassador Sean O’Brien, Irish rugby player and farmer, is helping to promote this competition and encouraging people to nominate a son, daughter, brother, sister or neighbour for this award. Previous winners of the FBD Young Farmer of the Year have gone on to great success proving that there is literally no limit to how far the recipient of this award can go.”

IFA President Eddie Downey said: “The FBD Young Farmer of the Year competition is the perfect platform for the next generation of farmers to set out their plans for the future. It allows a motivated and single-minded group to benchmark themselves against each other and develop skills that will stand to them in the years ahead. IFA recognises the importance of talented innovators getting the opportunity to make a contribution to our largest indigenous sector. I would encourage young farmers across the country to get involved”.

If you want to find out more, watch Irish and International rugby legend, Seán O’Brien and the current FBD Young Farmer of the Year, John Buckley, talk about why they think every young farmer should enter on www.macra.ie/videos. FBD recently revealed that Seán O’Brien would be working with them to highlight their offering to farmers.

The aim of the competition is to recognise and reward the top young farmers in the country. Entrants are judged according to a number of criteria including farm business initiative and innovation, levels of farm efficiency and enterprise quality, farm safety and environmental protection awareness, as well as agricultural knowledge and community involvement.

The overall winner of the competition will receive a bursary to undertake international travel and study farm practices. Young farmers can also be nominated for the competition. Anyone who nominates a young farmer will go into a draw for two nights B&B for two adults in any FBD hotel including dinner on one night. Forms are available from Macra na Feirme national office by phoning 01-426 8900, from your local IFA or FBD offices and for download on www.macra.ie and www.ifa.ie. You can also apply online – just log on to macra.ie. The closing date for applications and nominations is June 6.