Cultivate is an initiative created by a group of 26 Credit Unions to provide short- to medium-term finance built specifically around the growing needs of Irish farmers. Cultivate is a specialised loan for farmers seeking unsecured funding of up to €50,000 over seven years.

Paul Crowe, a part-time suckler farmer based in Kilrush, Co Clare, is one farmer who realised the benefits of the Cultivate loan.

As Paul describes, his farm as “a very old type of farm”, with no calving facilities set up properly.

Calving his cows in the spring was taking a lot of time before he left for his off-farm job each morning.

Paul used the finance provided by his local Credit Union to build an extension to a shed in order to ease calving.

The financial support provided through the Cultivate loan was key to helping Paul to modernise his farm.

The ease of access to the loan and the people-focused approach offered by his local Credit Union made the overall experience a very positive one for Paul.


As a farmer-friendly finance option, loan repayment schedules are available up to a period of seven years, with flexibility that makes sense for the individual farmer.

Cultivate loans are unsecured, and there is no need to be an existing Credit Union member to avail of a loan. Farmers can sign up in their local participating Credit Union office and be eligible to apply for a Cultivate loan immediately.

Cultivate loans are used by farmers like Paul for a wide range of investments, including:

  • Purchasing new or second-hand machinery.
  • Upgrading farm buildings and facilities.
  • Undertaking farm improvement works such as fencing and reclamation.
  • Buying additional livestock.


Cultivate loans are offered by 26 Credit Unions in Ireland. A full list of participating Credit Unions is available here