RDS Forest and Woodland Awards
Celebrating the best forests and foresters in Ireland, the 'RDS Forest and Woodland Awards' are Ireland’s National forestry awards. They recognise and reward farmers and woodland owners who are employing the principles of Climate-Smart Agriculture on their properties including sound commercial management, environmental protection and encouragement of bio-diversity.
The twin goals of promoting the economic and environmental benefits of good forestry and farming is the underlying motivation behind these Awards. The goal of the RDS Agriculture and Rural Affairs programme is to promote best practice and efficiency in farming to ensure farm household profitability and sustainability in Ireland. The RDS has been involved in forestry since the 1740s with many of Ireland’s oldest remaining forests originally planted on foot of RDS grants (or premiums as they were known). The Awards continue the RDS tradition of involvement in forestry by highlighting excellent Irish farmers and communicating what they can accomplish through the application of best practice and innovative management techniques.
There are four prize categories for the Awards:
1. Production Forestry
2. Multipurpose Forestry
3. Teagasc Farm Forestry Award
4. Community Woodlands
The Production Forestry Category is open to Farmers and landowners using sound silvicultural management on their farms. This award aims to recognise excellence in the management of production forestry.
While the focus is on the management of the area for wood production, judges will also review diversity of species, particularly the presence of native trees such as Ash, Birch, Oak, Willow, etc., to ensure greater efficiency and quality in the development of the sector.
The Multipurpose Forestry category is open to individuals and organisations that are expanding or developing existing or new forest habitats through natural and environmentally sensitive methods. Judges will review the planning and management of the area, ecological awareness, social benefit, silviculture methods, control of grazing animals and invasive species, as well as sensitive felling and thinning.
Teagasc Farm Forestry Award
The Teagasc Farm Forestry Award recognises working farmers who are integrating forestry and farming for environmental, social and economic benefits. The category aims to promote the positive sustainable contribution of forestry as an integral enterprise within the wider farming profile. It acknowledges the farmer’s role in actively managing the forest and promoting tree planting to strengthen wider farming sustainability.
The Community Woodland Award is designed to encourage and reward projects involving the communal ownership and/or management of forests and woodlands which have been established and managed in a sustainable way that is beneficial to the local economy and/or environment.
- With a prize fund of over €12,000, all woodland owners and managers are encouraged to enter the Awards as all woodlands, large or small, are of merit
- The winner in each of the above categories will receive €2,000, an RDS Silver Medal and a perpetual trophy
- The runner-up in each category will receive €1,000 and a special Certificate of Merit
- The Award winners will be announced at the 2019 RDS Spring Agriculture and Forestry Awards in the RDS Concert Hall
See the winners of the 2018 Awards here.
For further information, please contact:
RDS Agriculture Manager
Tel: +353 (0) 1 240 7215
Fax: +353 (0) 1 660 4014