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Agri-Food Course Gets Dairy Council Backing

19 July 2011

The Dairy Council for Northern Ireland is continuing to support the growth of the agri-food industry by encouraging applications to its ‘Farm Smart’ grant which supports the MSc in Agri-food Business Development at the University of Ulster.

With the next course beginning in September 2011, the Dairy Council ‘Farm Start’ grant will pay the tuition fees for one successful applicant to study on the programme.

Dr Geoff Simmons who is Course Director for the MSc Agri-food Business Development programme said: “The support of the Dairy Council in providing this bursary is invaluable for the student who will be employed in the NI agri-food sector. The bursary will give them an opportunity to gain new skills and knowledge that will help them to identify and leverage new business development opportunities, as well as progress their professional position in the industry."

Commenting on the Dairy Council’s support for the course, its Chief Executive, Dr Mike Johnston said: “This is the second year in which we are offering the ‘Farm Smart’ grant for the University of Ulster’s Agri-Food Business Development course. Running a farm in today’s current economic climate is not easy and a business skill set is as important as the knowledge of agriculture in sustaining a successful, efficient and profitable farm.  If the Northern Ireland agri-food industry is to continue to grow then it needs the best people with highly developed business skills. That’s why we are delighted to offer this valuable opportunity for one successful applicant to maximise their farm’s business and entrepreneurial potential.”

Deadline for applications for the Farm Smarts grant are to be with the Dairy Council by 22nd July 2011. For more information on the Farm Start grant, visit

For more information about the University of Ulster’s MSc Agri-Food Business Development Course, please contact Dr Geoff Simmons, Ulster Business School, University of Ulster on