Since the original establishment of FitzGerald Nurseries as an alternative farm enterprise in 1990 and the subsequent establishment of Beotanics the business has gone through progressive change adapting and evolving with market shifts and spreading its sales territory to a wider customer base. In 1999 what is known now as Beotanics was established by Patrick and Noirin FitzGerald to develop and fund the alternative farm business activities. The propagation, breeding and development of many genera of plants from tissue culture, cuttings, division and seed has been core focus for FitzGerald Nurseries while the parent company Beotanics funded activities evolved brands and plant IP and further evolved plant product development into niche food crops.
In 2011 after investigation of a number of niche crop opportunities a food crop strategy was established.During 2018 the company will re-brand and develop this business further through business relationships as it becomes more active in the expanding niche of novel crop development. With skill sets and knowledge base in plants the company owners see exciting opportunities for the future of European food sectors.
Food Crop Development
With 25 years experience in the development of plant varieties and production systems the company has embarked on an exciting and significant intensification of its interest in food crops. Through the successful application of traditional farming history of the founder, a ninth generation farmer, the application of non GMO modern breeding practices and an intense passion for Horticultural Innovation crops such as Sweet Potato, Yacon, Oca and others are now in the companies portfolio and being sold to growers all over Europe. Patrick FitzGerald is a leader in the development of sweet potato as a viable European crop for commercial farmers and through his imaginative leadership this crop i snow being commercially grown in areas of Europe not previously known to grow this crop. The company has a longer term vision to bring viable, scaleable and healthy crops to the European market over the coming years for further information on these developments all enquiries are welcome.
History in Plant Development
In January 2005 the company acquired a plant micro-propagation facility to ensure core plant varieties were under its control and coming from clean healthy stock plants. The laboratory business ensured a number of R&D projects could be undertaken and Beotanics evolved its own brands and genetic lines patented and protected by plant breeders rights worldwide. This technology adaptation has enabled the companies to focus through separate specialist competencies on its own exclusive production lines and those of our strategic breeder partners ensuring we have full control and monitoring of production information and potential to develop these plants. Significant progress has been made since then and the company has established many fantastic plant varieties as the core of its business development.
The company now has a comprehensive package of competencies and skills for the supply and development of both new and novel plant varieties in ornamental and food sectors of Horticulture production. Most importantly the company also collaborates with other micro-propagation specialists and breeder networks worldwide through formal collaborative breeding and production agreements. This work has ensured a long line of fantastic plants can be sustainably brought to grower customers, retailers and ultimately the public and ensures a supply of exciting and market relevant plants for our grower customers well into the future.
Pat FitzGerald – Managing Director
Since founding FitzGerald Nurseries in 1990, Pat has been internationally recognised as an innovator in the plant industry. From early in his carer has served as chairman of Ireland’s Nursery Association, as a member of the European Nursery Association Committee in the 90s. Pat has led the company to win many international awards through his extensive work in horticulture. As an innovator in International horticulture, Pat has proven his ability to develop and produce new plant varieties for international markets and work with other breeders in maximising their genetics. Pat has a keen interest in utilizing these established skills to produce innovative and commercially viable crops that answer many sociatal needs. Pat’s overall responsibility is for strategic management of product and strategic client development for the company.
Noirin FitzGerald – Director
Noirin is a full time administration manager and is responsible for financial management, HR and corporate governance for the company. Noirin has worked at FitzGerald Nurseries for the past 15 years and was previously an administration officer in government health services.
Dr Maria Angelica Sandoval – R&D Manager
Originally qualifying as a forestry engineer at the University of Concepción, Angelica went on to receive a Masters in Environmental Management and Euro-projects and a PhD in Agriculture, Forestry and Food Sciences from the University of Turin, Italy. As a specialist in tissue culture, clonal plant propagation, hydroponic systems, selection and breeding, she has had prove and successful experience in operational and strategic management in the fields of research, innovation and production. Angelica has administration and management experience in many plant research projects.
Richard Fitzgerald – Research Assistant
Richard is a research assistant to Dr Maria Angelica Sandoval and Pat FitzGerald. Richard graduated in Biotechnology at NUI Galway in 2016 and is undertaking work experience in plant bioactive research on behalf of the company. His work is solely funded by the company.
Melanie Honer – EU Sales
Melanie is responsible for strategic management of sales and marketing on the Continent. Based in Germany, she ensures the planning and introduction of new varieties from breeders around the world. Melanie is fluent in English, German and French, and has much experience in the European nursery industry in countries such as France, Germany and Switzerland.
1996– Teagasc / IFI / Farmers Journal National Farm Development Award Winner
2003– Best New Plant Kildare Growers Show,
2004- Best New Plant Kildare Growers Show, 2005- Best New Plant Kildare Growers Show,
2007– Best Plant Introduction Four Oaks Show Manchester UK,
2008– Best Plant Award IPM Essen Germany,
2008– 3 Bronze Medals Plantarium Netherlands
2008– Silver Medal Plantarium Netherlands Carex Everest
2008– European Garden Journalists Award Plantarium Netherlands for best Plant Concept MyPlant®,
2009– Gold Medal for Stand Excellence Award Plantarium Netherlands,
2010– Ulster Bank Regional Category winner in Business Achievers Award Family Run Business,
2010– Best Plant Award at IPM Essen Germany,
2011– Intertrade Ireland / Irish Times National Innovation Award Winner Systems and Processes
2012– Bord Bia Specialist Grower of the Year Award
2013– Best Perennial Plant Award at IPM Essen Germany worlds largest ornamental horticulture trade show
2013– Bronze Medal Plantarium Boskoop Netherlands
2014– Nominated UK Grower of the year. Finalist in two categories in recognition for unique development of brand and breeding success on international markets
2015– Kilkenny Agri-Business of the Year Winner
2015– Kilkenny Exporter of the year Runner up.
2016– Silver Medal at Plantarium 2016 for Carex Everlite another variety in the EverColor program