Funding of almost €300,000 has been awarded to 19 local agri-food tourism projects, Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue has announced.
The funding has been made available under the 2022 Rural Innovation and Development Fund through the Department of Agriculture. Minister McConalogue made a call for proposals under the fund in February.
Drinks Ireland has received €22,860 to invest in its Irish Whiskey 360° experience, the West Waterford Festival of Food has been awarded €25,000 for Taste Waterford and the Wicklow Naturally Farm to Fork Trails have received €24,479.
Other agri-tourism projects receiving funding include;
Achill Tourism (Hearth and Community Festival) - €16,300.
Tipperary Food Producers Network (Farm tours and experiences) - €18,081.
Una Bhan Tourism Cooperative (Market), Roscommon - €9,547.
Strandhill Peoples Market - €25,000.
Monaghan Co Council (Summer of Food) - €23,636.
Kildare Food Network - €25,000.
Achonry Farmers Market - €12,000.
Burren Eco Tourism Network (Burren Food Trail) - €10,780.
Carlow County Council (In Carlow Food and Drink Experience) - €10,780.
Ireland South East Agri Food Tourist Development - €10,780.
Laois Taste - €10,780.
Kilkenny County Council (Taste Kilkenny) - €10,780.
Cromane Seafest, Co Kerry - €10,780.
Cavan County Council (Cavan Food Network) - €10,780.
Bia Innovator Campus Galway (Food and Ag Experience) - €10,780.
Announcing the funding allocations, Minister McConalogue said: "It is great to be able to support these initiatives in the agri-food tourism sector and build on progress already made. There is a great geographical spread of projects this year, which highlights the interest throughout the country.
"Our 10-year roadmap for the agriculture sector, Food Vision 2030, highlights the natural synergy between agri-food and local tourism. I have backed this important sector and I will continue to back it as minister for our food sector, which is our greatest and most important sector.," he said.
The minister said he places a “huge emphasis and importance on agri-tourism in rural areas” as it provides "opportunities for rural businesses, including farmers, producers and artisans, to develop their products and services, connect with the community and visitors and improve skills and best practice."