Ancient Permaculture vs. Adams & Butler

Adam Afoullouss (Son) vs. Siobhan Byrne Learat (Mum)

Ancient Organic Farming vs. High End Sustainable Travel



Ancient Organics and Adams & Butler are both finalists in the Green Awards 2020 in the Small Organisation category, of which the winner will be announced on Tuesday the 25th of February.  This category is the only one for SME and Micro companies in Ireland with less than 50 employees, which makes up more than 95% of all Irish companies. 

Ancient Permaculture is a relatively new start-up three-tier organisation based in the heart of West Cork. The tiers are Ancient Organics – a food production service, Ancient Teachings and Consultancy & Design services.  It is run by Adam Afoullouss, a young man in his twenties and a young father, who is the only Irish person in Ireland trained by the main qualifying body – The Permaculture Research Institute of Australia – as a Teacher, Consultant, Designer and Project & Farm Manager.   Adam is one of the most highly qualified permaculturists in the EMEA. 


‘My vision is where Ireland becomes an innovator in both sustainable whole systems design and energy efficient use of its resources.  An Ireland that is inclusive and that can withstand and reverse the effects of natural degradation, eco-system loss and changes in our climate, our quality of air, water and essentially our quality of life’.  Adam is passionate about making a real difference.


‘I was born and raised in Dublin. I have overcome many hurdles in my own personal life and I know the struggle of marginalization, yet I was inspired through my travels to find solutions to the bigger issues we face today, such as climate change, loss of topsoil, flooding, drought, challenges of food production and sustainable agriculture etc.  I first studied Organic Horticulture and Permaculture, which in turn led me to continue my studies at the most highly sought-after Permaculture Research Institute in Australia. I finished my qualification there as a Teacher, Consultant, Designer and Manager under the management of Geoff Lawton, founder of the Research Institute. I was encouraged by Geoff, to gain experience in a desert climate in Jordan where I worked on a project called “Greening the Desert”, an aid project in the Middle East which is highly successful at demonstrating permaculture. My desire to return home brought me to West Cork where I got involved in a project in Cork City called “Green Spaces for Health” which was partly funded by the HSE and aimed to address mental health awareness, bring communities together and to help the environment. The Lord Mayor of Cork, Mick Finn publicly acknowledged the positive contribution that this project had on disadvantaged communities within Cork City and was actively involved in the project.


The success of this project made me realize that I needed a physical site to demonstrate the systems in production and how they could be applied practically into real life business situations. This is what led me to take over Devoy’s Organic Farm, which I am in the process of converting into Ancient Permaculture and where I am currently focusing on food production.


Adams & Butler is a member of the prestigious Virtuoso travel network, an upscale private travel designer offering clients unique and authentic, tailormade travel and cultural experiences.  They specialise in Africa, Australia, high-end cruises, and the Americas.  Adams & Butler have been featured frequently in Conde Nast, Virtuoso Life, the New York Times and the Washington Post.  Their clients include many celebrities, but they also offer more affordable luxury too.  Siobhan Byrne Learat, the founder is particularly proud of her Travel + Leisure A-List Award which she has held since 2016 and winning the Best Travel Agent Professional Award at the Irish Travel Trade Awards 2020 last month. 


They design itineraries for their clients that others simply cannot, whether around a theme, a private experience or meeting people who are not normally accessible to the public such as local heroes, naturalists, farmers, sole traders, sports people, politicians, the aristocracy, authors and specialists in their field.  They do stuff that is unique and not the usual, taking footfall away from over-visited sites to lesser known gems, enabling smaller local communities and businesses to survive and thrive.  Their access to local experts, knowledge and commitment to supporting local, ensures an authentic culture, travel and people experience where clients not only SEE, but DO, FEEL and ENGAGE.


Their mission is to offer a seamless travel experience to their clients based on their values of integrity, trust, creativity and value for money.  Underpinning this, is a commitment to safeguarding the planet for future generaions.  Adams & Butler are 100% committed to ethical business and corporate social responsibility practices.  Their vision is to be the first company of choice for high-end authentic cultural travel and people experiences.


Whether it is sharing a ride on the back of a tractor to a traditional sheep farm, climbing to the top of Slieve League, spending the night with a tribe in Northern Kenya, knitting with the local women in the Scottish isle of Harris, or having a lunch with an Earl in his private castle, Adams & Butler opens up a realm of interesting dispersed, cultural and natural heritage options for their clients.