Farming in Meath

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  • Aspects of Co. Meath

Traditionally, the economy of Meath was based on agriculture, which was the main source of employment. The 1901 and 1911 census returns list the occupations of many people living in the county as farm labourers.

Meath occupies an area of 234,490 hectares, of which 179,473 hectares are used for agricultural purposes. The county is renowned for its rich pasturelands, which are capable of supporting a wide range of farming activities.

There is great diversity in the physical landscape of Meath. It ranges from a short coastline of 12 kilometres in the east to an expanse of peatland and raised bog in the south-west. Rolling drumlin hills can be found in the north and fertile farmland in the Boyne, Blackwater and Nanny river valleys.

During the last part of the twentieth century, farming gradually gave way to industry as the main source of employment in Meath. However, potato production, grass growing, and cattle and horse rearing still remain strong sources of income.