For almost a decade, Transition Monaghan have been creating the “Sustainability Matters” column. The column has been printed on a weekly basis in the Northern Standard newspaper which circulates in Monaghan and surrounding counties. The aim of the column has always been to increase awareness and education on a range of environmental and sustainability issues of local, national and international interest. The vast archive of articles on the website are a testament to the effort involved over the years.
The Barker home place near Derryvalley, Co Monaghan is enjoying a wonderful renaissance under the thoughtful stewardship of owner (and well known Toastmaster) Charlie Barker. A few intrepid members of Transition Monaghan took a visit to see and learn how diversification and respect for nature are paying dividends. Dermot McNally explains all.
Teagasc in association with the Organic Trust occasionally run open days at selected farms throughout Ireland to showcase best practice. It also allows prospective organic farmers to network and learn from those who are “walking the walk”. Two Transition Members went along on the day and the following article (printed in the Northern Standard) gives a flavour of what they saw on the farm tour.
Monaghan newest start-up: the Irish Organic Mill
Few farmers have escaped the endless challenge of rising costs, falling prices and increased regulation. However in an effort to increase viability, two innovative Monaghan Farmers are teaming up to launch a new venture under the brand name, Irish Organic Mill. The Irish Organic Mill will serve the niche but growing market for stoneground baking flour. They hope to launch in 2021. Dermot McNally spoke to one of the two farming entrepreneurs to find out more.
Transition Monaghan collaborated with other local organisations at the Monaghan Allotments in Oct 2019. A great crowd were in attendence to hear talks by Emer Brennan of Monaghan Tidy Towns and Transition Monaghan, Michael O Hare Monaghan Allotments, Vincent Kierans Beekeeper and Margaret Palmer Herbalist and Transition Monaghan member. Later in November 2019 (as part of Monaghan Cavan Science Week) Transition Monaghan also organised an apple pressing/cider making event which was also well attended.
Great fun and networking were had by all at the apple pressing event held at Síolta Chroí event in September 2019. Gareth and Karen, owners of the new regenerative farming and social enterprise hosted the event in one of the hay barns on site. Everyone got a turn to juice apples and we all went away with enough bottles to last a lifetime. Many thanks to all participants for collecting and elbow grease in keeping the machines squeezing. Especial thanks to Karen and Gareth for hosting.
Some of the TM crew at the cider tasting event in December 2017. A lovely evening! Our community brewed cider is crisp & refreshing, almost like a sparkling wine and minus the sickly sweet taste of regular ciders! Thanks to Blasta aka World Food Porn @worldfoodsean for giving us the space and our own @lauraffelife who designed the labels (and our logo!).
Congratulations to the Carrickmacross Youthreach students who have made it through to this year’s ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards semi-finals. Their film, entitled ‘What A Waste’, aims to highlight the scale of the waste issue, its negative effects on the environment and it suggests what we all can do to help solve the problem. ‘What A Waste’ can be viewed on Youtube or via a link on Transition Monaghan’s Facebook page.
Dermot McNally of Transition Monaghan looks at our increasing detachment from nature as a result of our modern lifestyles which focus strongly on consumerism, urbanisation and automation, and have led to concern for our physical, emotional and mental health. Thankfully, pro-active reaction has led to the formation of many groups and activities to reinstate our connection with the surrounding natural world. In this article, Dermot explores the concept of ‘Forest Schools’ and how it could be applied in County Monaghan.
There is no doubt that today’s children are missing out on old fashioned outdoor fun and adventure. Could ‘forest schooling’ use nature as the place for learning as well as a playground for society’s youngest?
An Spud Off Mór: South Monaghan Potato Growing & Tasting Competition
Transition Monaghan is organising a potato growing & tasting competition for growers from South Monaghan. The closing date for entry is Wednesday, 17 June and the tasting will be undertaken by a panel of blind tasters in JJ Cunningham’s Loft, Carrickmacross on Saturday, 4 July, beginning at 1pm. The potatoes must either be boiled or steamed and cannot have any added ingredients. The competition is open to schools, community groups or individuals. For further information see ‘An Spud off Mór’ on www.transitionmonaghan.org or contact Conan on 086 0641864.
Decision Time is Near for Climate Change
The clock is ticking for a climate change deal. It is being discusssed this week by President Obama and the other leaders of the G7 Group at their summit in Germany. In December, world leaders will gather in Paris to agree a legally binding text on climate action. Friends of the Earth and other NGOs are calling on the Irish Government to strengthen its Climate Bill as it is debated in the Dáil. Continue reading →