Over 10,000 more farms ready for connection since last year

Number of connected farms has trebled in one year from 1,800 to over 6,000 

At the National Ploughing Championships in Ratheniska, National Broadband Ireland (NBI) has announced that 17,500 farms have now been passed by its rollout under the National Broadband Plan (NBP). The number of farms that can access NBI’s high-speed fibre network has more than doubled in the last 12 months with an additional 10,000 farms passed in that time. NBI has connected 6,000 farms to their network, with the rollout and number of connections moving ahead of schedule – this is more than three times the number of connected farms this time last year. 

The company reported that overall progress in the rollout today includes:

  • 52,947 homes, farms and businesses connected
  • 192,679 connections available across all 26 counties
  • Over 75% (438,241 premises) of the engineering surveys required before proceeding to design and build are now complete.
  • Over 70% of premises (422,353) have now completed the design stage.  
  • Almost 60% of the project (339,272 premises) has moved to or through construction, with almost a third of premises (193,824) now in the build complete category. 

Peter Hendrick, Chief Executive Officer, National Broadband Ireland, said: “We are delighted to announce that 17,500 farms now have access to high-speed broadband on our network and that 6,000 of those have already connected.

“The significance of high-speed broadband, and the technologies it enables, continues to grow for farming. With a high-speed connection, farmers can unlock new levels of efficiency, sustainability, and profitability in their operations. It’s therefore unsurprising that the rate of take-up on our network has been so strong among farmers, with 1 in every 3 passed so far already availing of a connection and the number of farms connected trebled since this time last year.

 “For farmers, this isn’t just about faster internet; it’s about unlocking new potential in precision agriculture, expanding market reach, and fostering innovation. As the rollout has developed, the NBI team and I have had the opportunity to meet a lot of people from the farming community who are harnessing high-speed internet and the range of technologies it unlocks. Farmers have been able to improve security on their farms through the use of smart cameras, they’ve introduced livestock monitors, and some are even using weather monitoring to automatically regulate the temperature in their grain stores. High-speed internet access has also streamlined a lot of administrative tasks and allowed farmers greater access to online marts.

“It’s also worth saying that many farm families have been locked out of accessing the same entertainment opportunities as well as the ability to work and study at home, compared to those of us in less remote and rural areas, and they are also appreciating now being able to access them with ease.

“We’ve built a lot of positive momentum on our rollout over the last 12 months and we’re confident that the pace at which we’re passing premises will continue to see more and more farms connect to the network. I encourage farmers to visit nbi.ie and check their Eircode to find out if they are included in the rollout and sign up for updates.”

*Data correct as of 08/09/23