ORGANIC FARMING SCHEME OPENS OCTOBER 20TH – CLOSES DECEMBER 9th 2022
The Organic Farming Scheme opens on October 20th and closes on December 9th 2022. It is funded through the Common Agriculture Policy and is designed to financially support organic farmers. Under the scheme, a farmer receives per hectare payments as well as a participation payment to cover additional administrative costs annually (see table below).
INTERESTED IN CONVERTING?
Below you will find information on the Organic Farming Scheme and the different steps in the conversion process to support you. Potential new entrants can also contact the Irish Organic Association on 090 643 3680 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to talk with a member of our friendly team if you have specific questions about your application.
ORGANIC FARMING SCHEME PAYMENT RATES
All farmers (in-conversion or fully converted) who are part of the organic farming scheme will be able to avail of the payment rates from 01 January 2023. Learn about the potential payments for your farm using the Department’s Organic Payments Calculator
New applicants who submit their application in October/November 2022 can choose to begin their conversion from 01 January 2023 to align with the new organic farming scheme.
Additional information on the Organic Farming Scheme can be found on the DAFM website.
ORGANIC FARMING SCHEME TERMS & CONDITIONS 2023
FORMS REQUIRED TO JOIN THE SCHEME
Once these forms are submitted to the Irish Organic Association you can apply for the Organic Farming Scheme via Agfood.ie.
ORGANIC FARMING SCHEME FOR EXISTING ORGANIC FARMERS
In recent days the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine sent you a letter regarding application to the Organic Farming Scheme (OFS). There are two categories for existing organic farmers;
- Farmers whose contracts end on December 31st 2022 – You must reapply to join the OFS now – closing date December 9th
- Farmers who joined the OFS in 2021 or 2022 who are still in contract. Your letter states that you do not need to apply to the OFS
The Irish Organic Association are urging members to check correspondence from DAFM to clarify your situation.
If you need to apply then you (or your advisor) must log on to the agfood.ie portal and submit an application to the OFS. You (or your advisor) must always declare your land parcels as “in-conversion” or “organic” on your Basic Income Support for Sustainability (BISS) on-line application in 2023.
NEW PARTICIPATION PAYMENT FOR FARMERS & GROWERS
All organic farmers and growers who are certified organic can avail of an OFS Participation Payment. This is an annual payment of €1,400 offered to organic licence holders to cover administration and training costs etc. You can avail of this payment but you must be in the OFS, which closes on December 9th. If you are a grower who has not previously been in the OFS you will need to register with DAFM to get a herd number (even if you do not have livestock as it currently acts as an identification number). CLICK HERE to register. Then you must log on to the agfood.ie portal and complete a BISS on-line application in 2023. Please note that as part of the new OFS growers under 1 hectare can apply for the OFS if they can prove that they have a commercial business.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
In this section you will find information on the most commonly asked questions about converting to organic farming.
Organic Farming (General)
Organic Farming Scheme
ORGANIC PRODUCTION PRINCIPLES COURSE
As part of the Organic Farming Scheme, you must also complete a 25-hour Organic Production Principles Course within a certain period. The course is offered by various providers around the country, including Teagasc and the National Organic Training Skillnet (NOTS)
OTHER GRANT SCHEMES
Organic farmers can also take advantage of other schemes and supports offered by the Department including the Organic Capital Investment Scheme (which offers 60% grant aid from 2023) and priority access to ACRES – the Agri-Climate Rural Environment Scheme