As part of the national plan for rural regeneration, the Department of Agriculture, through CEDRA (Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Areas) provided part funding for initiatives to suport community based markets for food/artisan produce in rural areas. GIY submitted an application to this fund and was awarded €15,000 to pilot The Cottage Market model through the setting up and development of three Cottage Markets.

The funding will be spent on a training programme for Cottage Market Operators including workshops on ‘How to set up a Cottage Market’ and ‘How to Grow for a Cottage Market’. The money will also be used to purchase key items such as tables and gazebos and will provide each operator with a range of marketing collateral such as signs, posters, banners and flyers to promote their market across the wider community.

Karen O’ Donohoe, GIY’s Community Manager and Founder of The Cottage Market said, “We are delighted to be awarded this funding. Not only will we have three vibrant community led markets up and running but we now have an opportunity to pilot the model with a view to developing a new and innovative way of helping our GIYers put homegrown and homemade food back in the heart of their communities.’

Minister Phelan also underlined the importance of the CEDRA micro enterprise funding available for community based local food and artisan markets.  She said “This is the type of project which proactively supports rural development as it helps stimulate commercial and retail activity in rural high streets as well as developing a strong sense of community involvement and achievement.”