Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Senator Pippa Hackett has announced that she has commissioned a report on opportunities within the horticultural industry.

The report will assess the current profile of the horticultural industry in Ireland and seek to produce a roadmap from which to develop the various sectors included under the umbrella classification of horticulture.

“This is a vital industry for Ireland and one which I believe offers many opportunities for growth. But we need a roadmap to chart the way forward, and I want this report to provide us with that,” Minister Hackett commented.

“The horticulture sector output was worth a very considerable €467m in 2020.

"It’s the fourth-highest sector in terms of value, with only beef, dairy and pigs greater,” she said.

Field crops, protected crops, soft fruit, top fruit, amenity, potatoes and mushrooms are the areas of Irish horticulture that will be examined by the report.

Independent review

The study will be carried out by independent experts who will identify and analyse the feasibility of opportunities emerging within the horticultural sector.

“There is huge room for growth and development and I want this report to help us build much further on what we are already doing.”

The tendering process for the report is currently under way, with the minister commenting that it is hoped that the study will be released by April 2022.