The pilot scheme was launched by Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with responsibility for forestry, Andrew Doyle in 2016.   While there are a number of support schemes available from the Department, Minister Doyle sought to assist forest owners with the development of a forestry KTG: “By removing the knowledge gap that exists amongst some forest owners, the Department hopes to assist forest owners to become forest ‘managers’.  Forests managed pro-actively by their owners will, I believe, result in more productive and more sustainable forests.”

The forestry KTG scheme, which was modelled closely on the Department’s existing KTGs for beef, sheep and other sectors of agriculture, focused on the mobilisation of timber and biomass.

Ireland’s land area currently has a forest cover of 10.5%, compared to the EU average of 34%, Minister Doyle said.  Forest owners and the Department are working together to expand this forest area in a sustainable way, so that the many benefits that it brings can be realised to the full extent possible, he added.  Management of a forest asset enhances an owner’s ability to derive a good return, according to Minister Doyle.  By removing the knowledge gap that exists amongst some forest owners, the Department hopes to assist forest owners to become forest ‘managers’.  “Forests managed pro-actively by their owners will, I believe, result in more productive and more sustainable forests,” he said.

Topics covered at the meetings include: Biomass, Thinning operations, etc. This is a perfect opportunity to gain knowledge about your Forestry plantation and its future.