New Funding Announced To Promote NI's Quality Regional Food

A new funding programme has been announced to promote quality regional food from across Northern Ireland, Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Andrew Muir has announced.

The 2024/25 Northern Ireland Regional Food Programme (NIRFP) provides support of £170,000 to help raise the profile of quality regional food. Applications are invited from not-for-profit groups and regional development agencies as well as registered charities.

Welcoming the opening of the Programme, Minister Muir said: "This is an important funding programme for our food and drink sector. The programme encourages collaboration between all sectors and representative bodies within the local food industry through financial support to help showcase quality regional food.
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"Last year, the Programme provided funding to a range of projects including the Food Pavilion at Balmoral Show where over 100 food and drink producers from across NI were able to showcase and sell their produce. The NIRFP also supported the Food Tourism Connection Summit, Armagh Food & Cider Weekend, and the food pavilions at the local agricultural shows.

"The food and drinks sector in Northern Ireland has so much to give and I will continue to support the delivery of high quality, high impact projects that will raise the profile of local quality produce."

The programme has supported many local events and initiatives by providing financial support in three key areas - regional fairs/exhibitions, seminars/workshops, and information programmes.

In 2023/24 the NIRFP awarded funding to 17 projects, providing local producers with showcasing opportunities at a range of agri-food events across Northern Ireland. In addition, DAERA also supported the third year of a generic agri-food promotion campaign to build on the successes achieved in 2021 and 2022. The campaign covered all sectors of the NI food industry highlighting the quality, sustainability and reputation of the food that is produced on local farms.

Applications are now open for projects taking place from 1 May 2024 to 31 March 2025 and must be submitted by 4.00pm on Monday 15 April 2024. Awards will be subject to budget availability.

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