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The linkages between agriculture and other sectors in the economy have been studied frequently and results generally point to high income and employment multipliers for agriculture. However, relatively few studies have looked at the spatial location of agriculture and even fewer studies have looked at the spatial location of the agri-business processing firms and their impact on the local economy. This paper will provide an overview of the agri-business processing sub-sector in Ireland. The geographical pattern of economic linkages within the sector and with other sectors in the economy will be analysed to investigate the impact of agri-business processing firms on the local economy. The economic linkages between the origin (location of the firm) and the destination of sales (downstream), purchases (upstream) and employment flows will be quantified. Exploring the factors influencing economic linkages in the agri-business processing sector will allow a greater understanding of the importance of the agri-food sector to the local economy. This analysis provides an interesting in-sight into the 224 agri-business processors surveyed as part of a wider research programme developing a Spatial Input-Output model for the Irish economy.


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