Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine
|Formed||April 2, 1919|
|Headquarters||Agriculture House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2, D02 WK12
|Annual budget||€1.312 billion (2012)|
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Irish: An Roinn Talmhaíochta, Bia agus Mara) is a department of the Government of Ireland. The mission of the department is to lead the sustainable development of a competitive, consumer focused agri-food sector and to contribute to a vibrant rural economy and society. It is led by the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine who is assisted by one Minister of State.
The official headquarters and ministerial offices of the department are in Agriculture House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. The departmental team consists of the following:
- Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine: Michael Creed, TD
- Secretary General of the Department: Aidan O'Driscoll
In carrying out its mandate the Department undertakes a variety of functions including:
- Policy advice and development on all areas of departmental responsibility
- Representation in international especially European Union and national negotiations;
- Development and implementation of national and EU schemes in support of agriculture, food, fisheries, forestry and rural development.
- Monitoring and controlling aspects of food safety.
- Control and audit of public expenditure under its control.
- Regulation of the agriculture, fisheries, food industries and forestry through national and EU law.
- Monitoring and controlling animal and plant health and animal welfare.
- Monitoring and direction of state bodies engaged in the following areas:
- Research training and advice.
- Market development and promotion.
- Industry regulation and development.
- Commercial activities.
- Direct provision of support services to agriculture, food, fisheries and forestry.
The Department of Agriculture was created at one of the first meetings of Dáil Éireann in 1919 with Robert Barton as the first Minister for Agriculture, Horace Plunkett as the department's first Vice-President, and T. P. Gill as its first Secretary. In 1899, Plunkett established the Department's forerunner, called the Department of Agriculture and Technical Instruction (DATI).
Over the years its name has changed several times, however, the role of the Department has remained the same. The Department was previously known as the following:
- Department of Agriculture (1919–1924)
- Department of Lands and Agriculture (1924–1930)
- Department of Agriculture (1930–1965)
- Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (1965–1977)
- Department of Agriculture (1977–1987)
- Department of Agriculture and Food (1987–1993)
- Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry (1993–1997)
- Department of Agriculture and Food (1997–1999)
- Department of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (1999–2002)
- Department of Agriculture and Food (2002–2007)
- Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (2007–2011)
- Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (2011–present)