30 Nov 2021

Laois man helps launch search for Ireland's best young farmer who'll get a bigger cash prize this year

Laois man helps launch search for Ireland's best young farmer who'll get a bigger cash prize this year

Aoife Smith of the National Rural Network, Michael Berkery, Chairman of FBD Trust, Macra na Feirme National President John Keane, Tomas O'Midheach, CEO of FBD Insurance, Tim Cullinan, IFA President

Macra na Feirme President and Laois native John Keane was on hand this week to launch the search for the best young farmer in Ireland who could win a €5,000 top prize. 

The Errill native attended the the event which marks the start of the search is on for the 23rd FBD Young Farmer of the Year. 

The FBD Young Farmer of the Year Awards in association with Macra na Feirme, are sponsored annually by FBD and run by Macra na Feirme with partnerships with the IFA and the National Rural Network. 

The stakes are higher in this year’s competition. In an exciting development, this year the overall prize fund is increasing substantially with an increased overall pot of cash prizes and the addition of insurance and hotel vouchers for category winners. The overall winner of the 2021 FBD Young Farmer of the Year will receive €5000 with each category winner and the Emerging Young Farmer taking home €1000. Each winner will also receive vouchers from the FBD Hotel Group and FBD Insurance.

Mr Keane said the competition is a showcase.

“Since its inception over 20 years ago the FBD Young Farmer of The Year has always showcased the very best of Irish farming. Young farmers in Macra Na Feirme are crucial in delivering on challenges and opportunities that face the sector over the years ahead.

"The Young Farmer of The Year offers an opportunity to recognize and showcase the very best of Irish young farmers, who are world leaders in sustainable food production” said the Macra na Feirme National President .

The competition features category awards for Dairy, Drystock (beef and sheep), Other Enterprises (including horticulture, pigs, poultry, tillage, equine), Land Mobility and Farm Management. Young farmers in these sectors are invited to enter and the winner of each sector will compete to be crowned the 2021 FBD Young Farmer of the Year. This year features awards for the Best Emerging Young Farmer and the National Rural Network Biodiversity Farmer of the Year Award. More below picture.

Left to right: Michael Berkery Chair of FBD Trust, Macra na Feirme President John Keane and Tomás O’Mideach CEO of FBD Insurance.

Tomas O'Midheach is the CEO of FBD Insurance.

“FBD Insurance is delighted to continue our long-standing support for Macra na Feirme and the FBD Young Farmer of the Year Awards. At FBD Insurance, we understand the importance of supporting Ireland’s young farmers and to help showcase innovation and sustainability in Irish farming. These awards celebrate the achievements of young farmers and their contribution to farming.

"I would encourage all eligible young farmers to enter this competition and to help learn, share ideas and to showcase the next generation of farming talent in Ireland. On behalf of the team at FBD Insurance, we wish all applicants every success in the competition” said .

IFA President Tim Cullinan urged young farmers to enter..

“At a time of significant change in farming, it’s important to recognise innovation, talent and resilience. The Young Farmer of the Year is the perfect platform for the emerging talent to put their ambitions to the test. I would encourage anybody who is looking to create a future for themselves to enter the competition” he said.

The competition was launched in 1999 and has been successful in raising the profile of young farmers within their community by recognising their achievements and contribution to farming. 

You can nominate a young farmer for one of the categories or you can enter yourself by visiting  The closing date for nominations is Monday 22 November 2021 and closing date for applications Friday 26 November 2021.

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