Farm Ireland

Tuesday 25 October 2016

Enterprise Ireland highlight innovation at the Ploughing

Published 23/09/2015 | 02:30

Milking equipment sold by Dairymaster
Milking equipment sold by Dairymaster

All it takes is one good idea and plenty of hard work to get it off the ground.

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Just ask the dozens of up-and-coming entrepreneurs and budding businesses that you'll encounter in the Enterprise Ireland Innovation stand at the Ploughing.

From utilising seaweed for animal health to slashing your carbon emissions from slurry - there are products that were hatched in college projects, mulled over while on a tractor and brainstormed in businesses looking to drive sales.

Denis Duggan from Enterprise Ireland said the level of entrants was very strong and some of those competing for a slice of the €65,000 prize money had extremely eye-catching ideas that wowed the judges.

"It has grown from 30 entries last year to about 55 this year," says Denis, adding they had added an international business centre to cater for their buyers that were coming in from China, Germany and other countries to view the established businesses and the up-and-coming enterprises too.

He says many of the ideas in will be seen in products on farms within the next few years. "They are drawn from the third level sector - so that is early research," he says.

"There are around 35 farmer led innovations and around 10 established household names in Irish agriculture such as Malone, Dairymaster, EasyFix and all with new products and innovations."

Around 35 of the new entrants have taken part in a 'pitch' process in front of business leaders to see whose idea might be most eye-catching and commercially viable, with the winner to be announced at the event.

Among those showcasing their products is Alma Jordan who decided to launch a series of farm safety stories for children.

Student Ian Bolger (19) has also been highlighted as one to watch in the future after developing a safety device to warn farmers if their loader is not properly attached.

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