The Northern Ireland Regional Food Programme (NIRFP), funded by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, has opened for applications for 2011/12.
The programme provides financial support for initiatives which promote quality regional food and collaboration between members of the local agri-food supply chain.
The food industry here plays a central role in contributing to the wider Northern Ireland economy. It accounts for nearly 20% of manufacturing output and employs 50,000 people directly. The NIRFP helps to deliver the quality food message to thousands of people each year, here and further afield.
Since its inception in 2007 the programme has assisted the formation and development of many well known food promotion initiatives; the Food Pavilion at Balmoral Show, Magherafelt’s Speciality Christmas Food Market, Taste of Ulster and the award winning Great Belfast Food Initiative which includes the Belfast Bred Walking tours. Applications will be accepted within four key areas; regional fairs/shows; information programmes; award ceremonies; and seminars/ workshops.
Assistance is restricted to not for profit organisations with an NI wide membership/remit. These can be agri–food groups representative of producers and/or processors, registered Charities and others fostering economic development locally. Applications are particularly welcome for collaborative ventures involving two or more of these organisations working together to deliver the objectives of the programme.
Closing date for completed applications will be 12 noon on Wednesday 20 April. An application form for funding can be downloaded from http://www.dardni.gov.uk/nirfp_2011-12 or obtained from:
Ms Una Hollywood
Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
Upper Newtownards Road
Tel: 028 9052 4497