The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has launched its new single advisory service aimed at supporting Northern Ireland’s farm and food businesses.
The Knowledge Advisory Service (KAS) will bring together existing advisory functions provided by CAFRE along with agri-environment advisory functions formerly provided by the Department’s Countryside Management Unit (CMU).
This new service will be managed within a single management structure and located across CAFRE’s three campuses and the DAERA Direct office network.
The primary role of the Knowledge Advisory Service will be the holistic development of farm and food businesses, where economic and environmental performance are inextricably linked.
This will ensure that the productivity, environmental sustainability and resilience agendas will be the primary focus.
From an environmental perspective, the new service represents an opportunity for DAERA to better integrate environmental advice into its support to the agri-food sector.
The service will be enhanced by the formation of a new Sustainable Land Management Branch, based at Greenmount Campus. This environmental branch will be delivering Knowledge and Technology Transfer (KTT) across the key areas of air quality, biodiversity, land management and water quality. Central to this branch will be the CAFRE Farm, which remains vital to the delivery of education, training and knowledge transfer to the farming industry.
Following engagement with key stakeholders, the new service encourages a partnership approach with external bodies.