Written answers

Thursday, 15 July 2021

Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine

Trade Promotion

Photo of Brendan GriffinBrendan Griffin (Kerry, Fine Gael)
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51. To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the measures he will take and his plans to develop new markets for Irish wool; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38324/21]

Photo of Charlie McConalogueCharlie McConalogue (Donegal, Fianna Fail)
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As the Deputy is aware, one of the actions under the Programme for Government is to undertake a review of the potential demand in domestic and international markets for wool based products such as insulation and fertilisers. Following the allocation of €100,000 in Budget 2021 for this review, I initiated a public consultation process in early March 2021 to determine the terms of reference for such a review which included

- the identification of market opportunities domestically and internationally for wool based products;

- carrying out economic feasibility and cost benefit analysis on proposed market opportunities;

- determining mechanisms that could be used to support industry initiatives; and

- identification of potential research projects applicable to supporting the identified market opportunities.

I am pleased to be able to advise the Deputy that through the competitive public procurement procedure, the Request for Tenders (RFT) seeking service providers to carry out this major study was published on 8th July 2021. The closing date for submission of tenders is 9th August 2021. The successful service provider will be contracted to carry out a feasibility study in accordance with the Terms of Reference detailed above and will be also required to examine and evaluate the proposals received during the public consultation and report on their findings.

The time frame for the completion of the review including the tendering process, consultation with the stakeholder group which I am currently establishing and publication of the final report is end of November 2021.

The recommendations from this review will help focus the development of a robust policy roadmap for the Irish wool industry.


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