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Farming in Central Portugal

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Posts: 3
Premium Member
Topic starter
(@matlock)
Joined: 2 months ago

Hi Everyone!

We are the Matlock family and are looking to relocate to Portugal from the UK. We are interested in moving to the central region to start a small farming enterprise on about 70 acres, with sufficient pasture land to support sheep farming and an olive grove (200-300 trees). We are keen to get in contact with other expats whom have undergone a similar challenge, or that may know locals who would be amenable to a discussion. We are keen to understand typical yields/income for this type of farming.

Additionally could anyone recommend any agricultural consultancy services/ associations that operate in the central region?

Any advice or recommendations would be greatly appreciated!

Many thanks,

The Matlocks

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Hon Member
(@thomasribatejo)
Joined: 7 years ago

Posts: 201

@matlock The Central Region is a vast and very varied region – indeed, it’s not recognised as a region for most everyday purposes in Portugal, just some expat and statistical ones, in essence – people tend to refer to districts, or historical zones.

Do you have any more specific zones in mind at this point?  It may help people assist you; and relevant associations are likely to be different depending on where you’re focusing.

Bear in mind key considerations of the availability of water, and also the risk of fire (which is broadly higher in much of central Portugal due to the proliferation of poorly managed eucalyptus).

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Premium Member
(@matlock)
Joined: 2 months ago

Posts: 3

@thomasribatejo 

Hi Thomas,

 

The area we are exploring at present is the Castelo Brancho region. Yes, as you have highlighted we have considered the water availability and forested areas particularly populated with eucalyptus whilst we have been looking for properties. 

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Hon Member
(@thomasribatejo)
Joined: 7 years ago

Posts: 201

@matlock Great – there are/have been active users of this forum based in Castelo Branco district, so hopefully there’ll be some advice for you in due course!

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Posts: 523
Hon Member
(@martin)
Joined: 19 years ago

just wonderd if you are from farming background or is this a change of life wish. I recall a prof from agricultural college in zimbabwe moved to near Silves and bought land – he remarked to me that he could grow 150 different things on his land  – what could he sell – zero….because of all the licences and paper work. Perhaps Thomas from above could check but there were incentives a few years ago to get young people to move back to the country – are they still doing this? 

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Premium Member
(@matlock)
Joined: 2 months ago

Posts: 3

@martin Hi Martin,

I’m Jess, the daughter of the Matlock’s. Thanks for your reply! I am just completing my Biology degree in the UK and have ample experience working on farms with cattle and sheep. So this is the next step I am looking to take in setting up something of my own with the help of my parents, who are looking for a lifestyle change. Your point about finding it difficult to sell produce is something I am trying to gather more information on as to how things operate in Portugal. As a 23 year old looking to come over to set up a small farming enterprise, it would be good to find out if they provide incentives for younger farmers! Thank you for providing the link, it had some interesting information!  

Many thanks,

Jess 

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Hon Member
(@antonio_f)
Joined: 3 years ago

Posts: 960

@matlock Hi Jess

My sugestion is to contact the ADACB – Associação Distrital dos Agricultores de Castelo Branco (Castelo Branco’s dictrict Farmers’ Association), as they are involved in the many areas of work, namely subsidies, cattle (identification, registration, death, transport guides, etc).

https://adacb.wordpress.com/contactos/

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Hon Member
(@thomasribatejo)
Joined: 7 years ago

Posts: 201

@martin I have limited insight on farming incentives and issues, but the decentralised EU funding support is provided by this agency.  The information is all in PT; the EN versions on the EU websites (which include the document you linked to, below) appear not to have been updated (at least not in EN).

It seems to be the case that there are two main routes to commercial production:
1 – small-scale, sold on through municipal markets or to buyers who supply markets and restaurants;
2 – larger-scale but focused relatively narrowly – so, it might be possible to raise sheep for any/all of their produce; but probably not throw in other random things.  Serious olive production is large-scale, so it seems unlikely small/medium olive groves would work for much other than local cooperative production (which may well still be worthwhile, of course).

Action 3.1 of the “Programa de Desenvolvimento Rural do Continente” has incentives for young farmers under 40 for their first ownership/running of an agricultural setup; which seems to consist of financial assistance to setting up.  However, this is limited to those with specific agricultural training (biology won’t count, I fear – Portugal views these things more narrowly than the UK); and there’s an obligation to maintain the business which is invested in for 5+ years.

Still – I suspect funding is worth exploring – but you’d need a fluent Portuguese reader/speaker, a relevant expert, perhaps a local contact in the area you’d be looking to set up.

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Posts: 523
Hon Member
(@martin)
Joined: 19 years ago
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Posts: 523
Hon Member
(@martin)
Joined: 19 years ago

by the way …have you seen clarksons farm on amazon – essential viewing 

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