A healthy field of barley
A Tipperary based tillage project has been named on a shortlist of schemes to be funded for further development under a European Scheme.
ECT (Enable Conservation Tillage) focusses on the wider adaptation of sustainable conservation tillage systems. It is based in the TIpperary and Laois areas.
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, announced the results of a competitive process to select proposals to proceed to Round 2 of the European Innovation Partnerships Initiative (EIP).
The EIP forms part of Ireland’s Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020, and is centred on groups of actors coming together to develop and implement their innovative ideas for how they propose to address challenges they have identified.
The Minister commented “I am delighted to see the EIP progressing to this next phase which provides an important opportunity to respond to challenges in our sector in a new way.
“The proposals received in response to this call are of a very high quality and a clear indication that the EIP initiative is recognised in the rural economy as a very useful approach to addressing challenges in a collaborative and innovative way.
“The 22 projects which have now been selected to progress to the next phase will now be funded to develop a detailed project plan for their projects. A number of these proposals will then be selected to move forward to the full implementation phase. ”
Support for this element of the EIP is structured around a competitive fund, whereby an open call for proposals addressing key challenges in the agri-food sector was put in place.
Round 1 of this competitive process started in December 2016 with an initial call for proposals using a simple application form. All proposals have now been evaluated by a selection committee with reference to criteria such as value for money, relevance to the EIP programme, and compatibility with Rural Development Priorities. This generated a shortlist of 22 applicants chosen to go forward to Round 2, and these will be funded to prepare detailed project plans. Following assessment of these detailed project plans, a final shortlist will be drawn up for implementation on the ground.
A further open call under the EIP will issue later this year.
An overall funding package of €24 million has been allocated to support EIPs under these two calls.