Mid Western Forestry Masthead

Planting Your Land

The New & Improved Free Mid Western Forestry Package

Mid Western Forestry are delighted to introduce their new free forContact Us About Our Free Packageestry packages including:

5 Years Maintenance - When you plant with Mid Western Forestry you will have NO COSTS as we will plant and maintain your forestry for 5 years in exchange for the grants. You maintain full ownership of the land and trees and still receive the forestry premiums.

25% Extra Profit - We plant, at no cost to you, the faster growing and more expensive "Improved Sitka Spruce" which research has shown to provide land owners with 20% extra timber volume and 25% extra profit compared to planting the unimproved Sitka Spruce. When you consider that your trees will take 30 to 40 years until maturity you need to make the right decision at the start so you can make the most out of your forestry.

5 Years Free Insurance - We will insure your plantation for the first 5 years against fire and capital loss, free of charge.

Superior Fencing - Your plantation will be fenced using superior quality fencing posts and wire to BS EN10244-1/2 and BS EN 10223-5, all at no extra cost to you.

Opportunity to Earn Money - If you have already done some work on applying for forestry approval or wish to undertake some of the establishment work yourself, we will undertake the contract and pay you for this.

Free Site Visit - If you are interested in forestry, and your site is suitable, we will visit your land free of charge. Infact, there are generally no upfront costs involved in planting forestry.

To take advantage of this limited offer contact us today.

CLICK HERE to download a fact file on 'Mid Western Forestry - Best Value in Planting' (59 KB)

CLICK HERE to download further information on 'Improved Sitka Spruce' (2,096 KB)

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Why Forestry?

Forestry planting has been made increasingly attractive through the current EU and Exchequer funded forestry grant and premium schemes, evident by the fact that over 16,000 landowners in Ireland have already planted some or all of their land. The main incentives for planting include:

  • Annual Tax Free Income - A farmer can receive an afforestation premium payment of up to �528 per hectare (�214 per acre) for 20 years. This payment is not subject to income tax, but it does attract PRSI contributions (but therefore this can qualify the farmer for a contributory old age pension).   
  • No Establishment or Maintenance Costs - In addition to the annual premiums, forestry is substantially grant aided. Generally, the grants cover all the establishment costs and maintenance for four years thus reducing your capital requirements. Grants are payable in two instalments. 75% of the grant is payable on planting and the balance is payable after the four years following inspection and approval.
  • Tax Free Capital Growth - Gains arising on the sale of felled timber are not chargeable to CGT. In the case of the disposal of woodlands, CGT is chargeable on the lands only and not on the growing trees, subject to the inflation adjusting factor.
  • Single Farm Payment - A farmer can continue to draw his/her full single farm payment.
  • Investment into the Timber Sector - By planting forestry you are making a significant investment into the timber sector. There is increasing demand, and subsequently increasing prices, for timber internationally for several reasons including: The increasing world population and demand from emerging countries; The increase in focus on the use of renewable fuels as per the Kyoto protocol and EU white paper on renewable energy; The decrease in supply from typical timber exporting countries such as Russia.
  • Lifestyle Advantages - Generally the afforestation grant includes the provision for 4 years maintenance.  Additionally, forestry is a low management intensity enterprise therefore allowing you to more time to pursue alternative activities.
  • Maintain Full Ownership - You will maintain the full ownership of your land and the crop of trees.

To download further information on why you should invest in forestry CLICK HERE (120 KB)

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The Afforestation Scheme

The Afforestation Grant and Premium Scheme administered by the Forest Service provides a package to encourage the planting of forests by compensating forest owners for the start-up costs of forestry establishment and by providing them with an annual income (premiums) for 15 to 20 years. The scheme is open to both farmers and non-farmers. Full silvicultural standards must be adhered to in order to meet the requirements of the scheme and the crop of trees must by managed as a commercial crop (i.e. for the realisation of profit).

To download a fact sheet on the Afforestation Scheme CLICK HERE (122 KB)

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Afforestation Premiums

Premiums are tax free and payable for up to 20 years. The maximum premium levels are shown below:

GPC 1 - Unenclosed  155Ha / 63ac
GPC 2 - Sitka Spruce/ Lodgepole Pine 369Ha / 149ac 
GPC 3 - 10% Diverse 427Ha / 173ac 
GPC 4 - Diverse  454Ha / 184ac 
GPC 5 - Broadleaves 481Ha / 195ac 
GPC 6 - Oak  515Ha / 208ac 
GPC 7 - Beech  515Ha / 208ac 
GPC 8 - Alder 481Ha / 195ac 

Land Categories

Unenclosed Land means land that was never improved and enclosed by man-made boundaries for agricultural use other than extensive grazing. 

Enclosed and Improved Land means land that was enclosed and improved for agricultural use by cultivation, manuring or both, and which is completely surrounded by man-made boundaries and usually shown as such in Ordnance Survey maps of scale 6 inches to 1 mile (1:10560).

Premium Categories

GPC 1 - Unenclosed land - All approved broadleaves and conifers planted on unenclosed land receive the unenclosed grant and premium rates.

GPC 2 - Sitka spruce/ Lodgepole Pine - This plot is made up of Sitka spruce or lodgepole pine.  For landscape purposes, it is advisable to introduce a small number of other species into this plot.  This plot on its own as a plantation is not eligible for grant aid.

GPC 3 - 10% diverse mix - This plot is made up of an intimate mix of Sitka Spruce or Lodgepole Pine and a suitable diverse conifer (normally Japanese larch or Hybrid larch).  The diverse conifer content must be at least 10%.  This 10% mix can be made up of trees intimately mixed through the plantation, trees planted in groups through the plantation or a combination of both. The diverse conifer species in this intimate mix may be substituted by suitable broadleaves.

GPC 4 - Diverse - This plot is made up of acceptable conifer species other than Sitka Spruce and Lodgepole Pine.

GPC 5 - Broadleaves - This plot is made up of acceptable broadleaves other than those listed in other GPCs.

GPC 6 - Oak - This plot is made up of pure oak and/or an oak/conifer mix.  The only conifers acceptable for this mixture are Scots pine and European larch.

GPC 7 � Beech - This plot is made up of pure beech and/or a beech/conifer mix.  The only conifers acceptable for this mixture are Scots Pine and European Larch.

GPC 8 � Alder - This plot is made up of pure alder.

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FEPS encourages farmers to combine the establishment of high nature-value forestry with their participation in the Rural Environment Protection Scheme (REPS). The scheme is only open to farmers who are currently in REPS. The scheme attracts an additional premium for a period of up to 5 years dependant upon the exit date of your REPS plan. The additional FEPS premium is paid on top of the Afforestation premium.

In March 2010 the Forest Service deemed that "The FEPS Scheme will remain open only to new entrants who can meet the requirements of the existing scheme. Persons who are in FEPS must continue to meet the terms and conditions of the scheme in order to continue to receive the additional FEPS premium... There is no link between FEPS and the new Agri-Environmental Options Scheme."

To download a fact sheet on FEPS CLICK HERE (122 KB)

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FEPS Premiums

Under FEPS, a landowner will receive additional premium of �200 for each hectare of woodland planted, regardless of farm size, subject to a minimum of 8 hectares being planted. For farm owners of 30 hectares and less, the minimum plantation size is 5 hectares, attracting an additional premium of �150 per hectare. The FEPS premium is payable in addition to the premiums paid under the Afforestation Scheme.

Farm Size Minimum Plantation Size FEPS Premium
Greater than 30 Ha 8 Ha 200 / Ha
30 Ha or less 5 Ha 150 / Ha
30 Ha or less 8 Ha or more 200 / Ha

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The Application Process

All proposed forestry developments must receive the prior written approval of the Forest Service. Following completion of the revelant operations, formal applications for payment of the Afforestation Grant, Premiums and Second Instalment Grants must be made. The following provides an outline of what is required at each stage:

  • Form 1 - Preplanting Approval Application - Form 1 applications must be completed by the applicant and a qualified forester. Attachments will have to accompany the application and will include any combination of the following: Forest Service Form 1; Location Map; Certified Species Map; Biodiversity Map; Soil Tests & Drainage Reports; Cultivation Plan. The Form 1 will be sent to the relevant Forest Service Inspector for approval. If there are any environmental considerations identified, the application is simultaneously referred to the relevant prescribed body. For sites of a certain size, a public notice is published in the local press and/or the application is sent to the relevant Local Authority for their observations. If a Technical Approval is issued, you will be required to apply for Financial Approval.

  • Form 2 - 1st Grant & Premium Application - The first instalment of the grant (which  is generally mandated to a Forestry Company) and first premium are due for payment on completion of the initial site operations and submission of a completed Form 2. The application must be completed and signed, at the time of submission, by both the applicant and the approved forester to whom pre-planting approval is issued. Form 2s will require approval from the Forest Service prior to payment.

  • Form 3 - 2nd Instalment Grant Application - The second instalment grant (which  is generally mandated to a Forestry Company) is due for payment four years after the completion date of the plantation.  Application for the second instalment will generally warrant an inspection by the Forest Service. Form 3s will require signing by both the applicant and an approved forester.

  • Form 4 - Subsequent Premium Application - The farmer rate of premium is payable for a period of 20 years and the non-farmer rate for a period of 15 years. All premiums subsequent to the first premium are applied for by completing a Form 4 which is issued to the applicant from the Forest Service on an annual basis.

Mid Western Forestry can assist you will all stages of the application process. CONTACT US for further details.

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