Supporting innovation, competitiveness and sustainability in agriculture and forestry.

About EIP-AGRI in Ireland

What is EIP-AGRI?

The European Innovation Partnership for Agriculture Productivity and Sustainability (EIP-AGRI) is an exciting and novel approach to research and innovation. EIP-AGRI is one of five European Innovation Partnerships (EIPs) launched to boost the EU’s capacity to innovate.  EIP-AGRI focuses on agriculture and forestry. Other EIPs target issues related for example to healthy ageing and smart cities.

EIPs are challenge-driven and focus on societal benefits and modernisation. EIPs support cooperation between research and innovation partners in order to achieve better and faster results compared to existing approaches.

The overall aim of EIP-AGRI relates to the pooling of expertise and resources by bringing together public and private sectors at EU, national and regional levels. EIP-AGRI works to:

  • Combine supply and demand side measures
  • Focus on forming partnerships, using bottom-up approaches
  • Link actors in different types of interactive innovation projects such as Operational Groups (OGs) under Rural Development Programmes (RDPs).

The National Rural Network (NRN) works closely with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) to support and build networks between Ireland’s OGs, as well as research and disseminate information on Ireland’s EIP-AGRI projects.

Operational Groups (OGs)

EIP-AGRI Operational Groups are funded under the RDP and are project based.  OGs bring together multiple actors such as:

  • Farmers
  • Researchers
  • Farm advisers
  • Environmental groups
  • Other NGOs.

OGs work on projects to advance innovation in the agriculture and forestry sectors.

Read also our EIP-AGRI: Ireland’s Operational Groups 2019 Booklet.

The NRN has developed an Interactive Storyboard Database and infographic of Ireland’s EIP-AGRI OGs.

Click on the image below to visit database – or click here to view infographic.

EIP-AGRI OG 23 Projects Infographic - Smaller File

Focus Groups

EIP-AGRI Focus Groups bring together expertise from researchers, advisors, farmers, and industry. Focus groups are:

  • Designed to facilitate knowledge transfer between members
  • Work to collect and assimilate knowledge on good practices in a specific area and list opportunities and solutions
  • Set up at an international level bringing together 20 experts from the agriculture sector
  • Temporary groups of selected experts focusing on a specific subject, sharing knowledge and experience.

Focus groups are convened over a 1 to 2 year period and each group must meet at least twice a year. At the end of the period a report is completed. Results and findings of the focus group are published on the EIP-AGRI website.

A number of focus groups have Irish representation. Find more detail on these in the ‘Focus Group’ section below.

Operational Group Storyboard

Latest News

MacGillycuddy Reeks EIP-AGRI Project Expansion

Welcome news for farmers and communities surrounding the MacGillycuddy Reeks in Co. Kerry! The MacGillycuddy Reeks European Innovation Partnership (EIP-AGRI) project is delighted to announce the addition of eleven new farmers to the locally led agri-environmental...

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Information Policy on the CAP Survey

The European Commission has contracted PPMI – a European research and policy analysis centre to carry out the evaluation of the information policy on the Common agricultural policy (CAP). Currently, the contractor is launching a survey for stakeholders to gather their...

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Farm Safe – Farm Nature / Kids Colouring Competition

The National Rural Network have teamed up with AgriKids to help raise awareness among children of how farmers protect the environment and keep wildlife safe. Farm Safe – Farm Nature is a children’s colouring competition targeted towards 5 to 12 year olds. Competition...

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Blog Posts

Pearl Mussel Project – ‘More than it says on the tin’

In this EIP-AGRI guest blog, Dr Derek McLoughlin, Assistant Project Manager of the Pearl Mussel Project EIP-AGRI Operational Group provides us with a unique insight into the origins and ethos of this innovative pilot agri-environment programme seeking to improve the...

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Maximising Organic Production Systems (MOPS)

Meeting the Growing Demand for Organic Fruit and Vegetables in Ireland In this guest blog, Gillian Westbrook, Maximising Organic Production Systems (MOPS) EIP-AGRI Project Manager and CEO of the Irish Organic Association (IOA) whom are the lead partner of the project,...

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Are you interested in EIP-AGRI and
rural development?

Case Studies

Small Biogas Demonstration Programme (SBDP)

This project aims to stimulate the deployment of innovative on-farm small-scale biogas production by providing support and a capital contribution to three demonstration projects. Research will assist in understanding how biogas can drive sustainability improvements at...

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Protecting Farmland Pollinators

This project aims to develop a flexible mechanism that encourages all farmers to make their whole-farm more pollinator friendly in a way that is measurable and will not impact on productivity. Geographical location (NUTS3) Mid-East Region (IE) Main Funding Source...

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Allow Project – Duhallow Farming for Blue Dot Catchments

This project aims to restore the status of a high-status objective waterbody not meeting its objective in an agricultural catchment (River Allow, Duhallow, Co Cork), through a collaborative locally led farmer focused approach, between farmers with experience of...

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EIP-AGRI: Ireland’s Operational Groups 2019 Booklet

The National Rural Network team at NUI Galway have designed and produced a booklet entitled ‘EIP-AGRI: Ireland’s Operational Groups 2019’ to highlight and promote the 23 Irish EIP-AGRI Operational Groups selected by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Reports and Resources

Focus Groups

EIP-AGRI Focus Groups are temporary groups of selected experts focusing on a specific subject, sharing knowledge and experience.  These groups bring together expertise from research, advisors, farmers, and industry. Focus Groups are set up at international level bringing together 20 experts from the agriculture sector.


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The groups are designed to facilitate knowledge transfer between members, to collect and assimilate knowledge on best practices in a specific area and list opportunities and solutions. Each Focus Group must meet at least twice a year. The Focus Group is convened over a 1-2 year period.  At the end of the period a report is completed and the results and findings of the Focus Group are published on the EIP-AGRI website.

The following Focus Groups have Irish representation:

  1. Agro-forestry: woody vegetation
  2. Animal Husbandry
  3. Nutrient Recycling
  4. Dairy Production Systems
  5. New Entrants into Farming
  6. Mainstreaming Precision Farming
  7. Protein Crops
  8. Livestock Emissions
  9. High Nature Value (HPV) Farming Profitability
  10. Short Food Supply Chains
  11. Permanent Grassland

Read more here: www.eip-agri.ie

NRN Partners & Funders