20 May 2022

How can young Longford farmers complete their Green Cert?

How can young Longford farmers complete their Green Cert?

Teagasc are running Green Cert courses later this year

Young Roscommon and Longford farmers have three options available to them by which they can complete their Green Cert.
All three options lead to the same result and benefits for the Young Trained Farmer. Two of these three options will be available locally in the Roscommon/ Longford Teagasc Unit shortly and the third option can be accessed from our nearest Agricultural Colleges, (Mountbellew, Co Galway and Ballyhaise, Co Cavan).

Which Green Cert Option is best for me?

The three options are outlined below starting with the choices most suitable to a young school leaver, right up to the choices facing aspiring students in their thirties, forties and beyond.

The most important thing to remember is that there is a route for everyone and the Education staff in the Roscommon / Longford Teagasc Unit are always available to guide you in your choices.

Green Cert Route 1

This option is offered on a full time basis in Agricultural colleges. Students must be 17 years of age or over on January 1 following entry to the course. This course is most suitable for school leavers and it would be desirable but not essential to have completed the Leaving Cert cycle in secondary school.

The course runs over two years with a combination of formal course work and a period of practical learning experience. This course is also suitable for young people seeking employment on farms. Applications can be made directly to the Colleges or by using the online application via

If applying online you can apply for a number of colleges using the preference system. There is a Means Tested Teagasc Grant Scheme associated with this option, for more information on this, check directly with the College in question.

Green Cert Route 2

This option is called The Teagasc Part Time Green Cert and will on offer in the Roscommon / Longford Teagasc Unit this autumn 2020.

Applicants must be over 23 years of age when starting this course, there is no upper age limit applicable. It is desirable but not essential to have completed the Leaving Cert cycle in secondary school. Students must have access to a working farm including the financial details of the same farm. The course duration will be approximately 2.5 years on a part time basis, generally 1.5 days per week from September to April.

The course work is split between practical / skills training and classroom sessions. The course consists of a range of modules such as Farm Business, Principles of Agriculture, Farm Safety, Farm Enterprise Production, Safe Use of Pesticides etc.

Students interested in taking Green Cert Route 2 should contact Therese Hilliard in the Longford Teagasc Office (043-3341021) to put their name on the expression of interest list.

Green Cert Route 3

This option is called The Teagasc Distance Education Green Cert (for Non-Agricultural Award Holders). This option will also be available in the Roscommon / Longford Teagasc Unit commencing on September 18, 2020.

Applicants for this course must have obtained a Level 6 or higher major award in a non –agricultural discipline. In recent years, plumbers, carpenters, mechanics, nurses and engineers have all been able to avail of this express option.

This part time option extends over a period of 15-18 months incorporating at least 28 contact days, roughly 2 per month. The course work covered is the same as that in Route 1 and 2 above, the main difference is that Green Cert Route 3 students will be doing a’ fast forward’type of course.

The shorter time span for this Route is based on the assumption that students with previous college experience are capable of working on their own initiative to meet the tighter deadlines. Students interested in taking Green Cert Route 3 should contact Caitríona Corcoran or Catherine Divilly in the Roscommon Teagasc Office (090-6626166) for an application pack as soon as possible.

What benefit is the Green Cert to Young Farmers?

The Teagasc Green Cert is well known as the course many people starting up in farming complete. While young people are not prohibited from entering farming without it, or its equivalent here are a number of attractive benefits that can be obtained by a young trained farmer. So what are these benefits and why is there such a demand for the Teagasc Green Cert?

There are Educational Requirements for certain Department of Agriculture and Revenue Schemes; more often than not these Schemes will be of financial benefit to the young trained farmer. Some of these schemes are outlined below.

l Revenue – Stamp Duty Relief
l Revenue – Agricultural Stock Relief
l DAFM – New – Entrant in a Registered Farm Partnership.
l DAFM – TAMS Scheme (60% grant)
l DAFM – National Reserve
l DAFM – Young Farmers Scheme (25% top up)

The QQI Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate in Farm Administration (Teagasc Green Cert) is the minimum requirement for all of the above schemes. The DAFM trend in recent years requires applicants to have the course completed at the time of application.

With a new CAP package presently being negotiated in Brussels for after 2020, it would be a shrewd move for young farmers to start planning their training now so they will be in a position to maximise their benefits under whatever CAP brings in the future.

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