This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Irish Geography, Vol. 43, no. 3 (November 2010).

Copyright Taylor & Francis, available online at:


Drawing on a pragmatic approach, this paper provides an analysis of governmental support for organic farming in Ireland. There are varying levels of encouragement and programmes provided to farmers in their conversion from conventional to organic production, and in their maintenance of organic production. Support policies vary across regions and are linked to European Union legislation, thus it is challenging to document the many types of support in place. This research investigates relevant technical, financial, and policy support available to organic farmers in Ireland. This exploratory study develops an assessment of Ireland within eight key categories of organic agricultural support: leadership, policy, research, technical support, financial support, marketing and promotion, education and information, and future developments. Information and data from the Irish Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (DAFF), the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority (Teagasc), and other governmental and semi-governmental agencies were utilized to assess the level of support in each category. Following the pragmatic approach, this assessment provides key findings which allow policymakers, organizations and citizens to better understand the current situation and set a path for the future development of organic farming in Ireland.