Industry & Business

€30,000 Cottage Market Fund Announced

€30,000 Cottage Market Fund Announced

€30,000 Cottage Market Fund Announced
March 01
12:28 2018

A fund of €30,000 has been announced by GIY with the support of The Ireland Funds for the establishment of 10 new GIY Cottage Markets across the country during 2018. In 2017, the fund supported the establishment of 15 Cottage Markets for the first time with many of these markets being the catalyst of at least 16 new enterprises across Ireland.

GIY now invites community groups to avail of start-up funding in order to set up and run their own Cottage Market aiming to put home-made, home-grown food and craft back at the centre of Irish communities with the added bonus of supporting new business start-ups, resulting in job creation. Applications are now being accepted online via and

The successful applicants will be awarded a tailor-made training programme, to ensure the markets’ success and longevity. Social Enterprise, Marketing, Finance and Food experts will deliver training on a number of key modules including how to set up and run a viable community market, how to grow food for a market and training on how to successfully market the new community-led venture. The deadline for applications is March 23rd; the groups behind the 10 new Markets will be selected by March 30th with their training programme set to take place at the home of GIY ‘GROW HQ’ in Waterford on April 14th, 2018.

Commenting on the launch of the 2018 Cottage Market programme, GIY’s Head of Community Development and Founder of The Cottage Market Karen O’Donohoe said: “We are delighted to announce plans to establish 10 new Cottage Markets in 2018 with the support of The Ireland Funds. An additional 15 new Cottage Markets were established in 2017, these resilient towns and villages all across the country were keen to come together and tackle their own community’s over-reliance on what is predominantly mass-produced and imported food. And for each of these communities, it has been a huge success, the organiser’s behind these markets tell us that this initiative has resulted in the establishment of new enterprises, which have all created jobs.

“In Monaghan three new businesses have been created, in Annascaul two new enterprises have been established, in Headford, organisers say five new enterprises have been created; in KildorreryCounty Cork and Killmalock County Limerick each location has seen 3 new enterprises created; at the Cottage Market in Newbridge organisers say the market has seen the establishment of 2 new enterprises. This is an incredible success, it firmly proves the ever-increasing interest and demand from Irish consumers for locally grown and locally sourced food and it is something we hope to build on again in 2018.”

According to GIY a Cottage Market differs from a Farmer’s Market concept in that it is all about bringing hobbyists and amateur producers from a local area together to showcase their often-hidden skills and talents in areas such growing, sewing or baking. The Cottage Markets also promote GIY’s principals of food empathy, which instils a better understanding and appreciation of where food comes from, which results in people living and making healthier and more seasonal choices.

Caitriona Fottrell, Director at The Ireland Funds, said: “The Ireland Funds is delighted to support the work of GIY’s Cottage Market initiative. GIY has been a transformative movement in Ireland, not only developing community-led markets, but also developing micro-businesses, and developing opportunities for communities to socialise. Through a Flagship Grant investment we made in 2016, we are proud to have supported the development of 15 new and thriving cottage markets in just 2 years. We look forward to finding out which new communities will be re-energised in 2018 through GIY’s Cottage Market fund.”

Applications to establish new Cottage Markets are now being accepted online and the process remains open until March 23rd 2018. Applications from existing market operators whose markets meet The Cottage Market criteria will also be accepted, the application form is available online at


Pictured at the announcement of the 2018 Cottage Market Fund is GIY’s Head of Community Development and Founder of The Cottage Market Karen O’Donohoe with Cottage Marketers Sue parsons, Betty Brosnan, Trudi O’ Regan, Fiona Whelan, Eamonn McCarthy, Nora Cunningham, James Nichola, Marie O’Mahony, Louise Cuddihy, Siobhan Doherty.

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