The 2013 Irish Farmers Journal Land Price Report,
published in this week's issue of the newspaper, reveals that the average
price paid for land last year was €9,400 an acre/ €23,200 per hectare, down 5.6% from 2012.
Most land on the market results from executor and receiver sales.
The report says farmers remain the main buyers of agricultural land, in
particular dairy farmers who are seeking to extend their farms ahead of the
abolition of milk quotas in the EU in 2015.
The report also says there is demand from returning Irish emigrants, who
emigrated when the recession hit in 2008.
Irish farmers are hugely
dependent on EU welfare 41 years after Ireland joined the then European Economic
Community in 1973.
In 2012, the average
direct payment per farm was €20,534 comprising
a shocking 81% of farm income; only one third of farms are economically
viable; 27% of farmers have an off-farm job and
there are more Irish farmers over 80 years of age than under 35.
Farmers made over €4bn from the national roadbuilding programme during the boom,
never mind a bonanza from other development land sales.
It was claimed during the
property bubble that in France, each field changed hands at least once every 70
in Ireland on average a field changed hands every 555 years! Total
annual turnover in Ireland can be as low as 0.2% of the total acreage. Countries
with sales restrictions, such as France, had the cheapest land.
Land was about €6,000 a
hectare in France, compared with almost €60,000 (€24,200
per acre) in Ireland -
- the most expensive in Europe in 2007 -- as French land must be offered first
to young local farmers. In the later years of the bubble in Ireland, demand has
been boosted by purchases of 'lifestyle
farms', especially within 100 km of Dublin, coupled with the increasing trend of
'off-farm' employment leading to commercial farmers in effect becoming 'hobby
Check out our
, at a low annual charge of €25