Farming News and Updates

The Sustainable Farming Incentive

The Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) rewards farmers for farming practices that help produce food sustainably and protect the environment.

You can apply for an SFI agreement if you were eligible for the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in 2022 or 2023.

Please see more information on why you should apply and what SFI can offer you here

You can also speak to an advisor and book in for FREE support as part of our Future Farming Resilience programme email info@northdevonplus.co.uk or call 01237 428 834.

Published 2nd January 2024

Government announces application dates for Sustainable Farming Incentive 2023

Published26 August 2023

Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) 2023 will accept applications from 18 September. 

Farmers can sign up for the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) from 18 September and will be invited to register their interest from 30 August. 

The dates provide certainty and pre-registration will ensure farmers are supported to have all necessary information in place, including online maps and land use / cover details, so they are ready for when the scheme starts to accept applications from 18 September.

For more information click here

 

 

Sustainable Farming Incentive 2023: Expanded offer to roll out from August

Published21 June 2023

The Sustainable Farming Incentive 2023 will start accepting applications from August, offering an improved, more streamlined process for farmers.

The new and improved Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) 2023 will start accepting applications in a controlled rollout from August, the government has confirmed today (21 June), offering farmers additional actions and more flexibility to choose the actions they want to get paid for.

Farmers will get paid for taking actions that support food production and improve farm productivity and resilience, while also protecting and improving the environment. Additional actions under SFI 2023 will help ensure there is an offer that is attractive and workable for all types of farms.

The 23 actions on offer cover existing themes including soil health and moorland, as well as new actions on hedgerows, integrated pest management, nutrient management, farmland wildlife, buffer strips, and low input grassland.

When adopted at scale, these actions will support sustainable food production and contribute towards the environmental targets set out in the government’s Environmental Improvement Plan. Optimising the use of nutrients through a nutrient management review, for example, will not only reduce carbon emissions and improve the natural environment but can also reduce farmers’ costs.

Read more here

Guidance

SFI Handbook for the SFI 2023 offer

Guidance about how the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) 2023 offer will work for farmers.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/sfi-handbook-for-the-sfi-2023-offer

 

Reminder:  Calling all farmers! Don’t forget the deadline is 11:59pm on 15 May 2023 for you to submit a BPS 2023 application.

Don’t leave it too late. Applications submitted after 11:59pm on 15 May 2023 will incur a penalty.

You can find all of the BPS 2023 guidance on GOV.​UK

Farming Grants available in 2023

In 2023, more than £168m of funding will be available through a variety of grants.

Click here for further details 

 

The Farming Equipment and Technology Fund  is part of the Farming Investment Fund.  

09.02.2023

This fund offers grants for specific items of equipment to increase productivity, boost environmental sustainability and improve animal health and welfare. 

Farmers, foresters and growers in England, including contractors to these sectors, can apply for a grant between £1,000 and £25,000. Grants go towards the cost of specific items from a prescribed list. 

After a successful first round, the fund will open again later this month.  

You can apply for a grant for specific items of equipment and technology for farming, horticultural and forestry businesses.

FETF 2023 has been split into 2 themes:

  • Productivity and Slurry items (Annex 3)
  • Animal Health and Welfare items (Annex 4).

You can apply to either theme or both, for items that best suit your business.

FETF 2023 grant is competitive, and you will not automatically get a grant.

FETF 2023 is administered by the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) on behalf of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Click here for details on The Farming Equipment and Technology Fund

Click here for details on The Farming Investment Fund

 

Countryside Stewardship Higher Tier now open for applications

07.02.2023

The application window for Countryside Stewardship is now open for (CS) Higher Tier (HT) revenue agreements which will begin 1 January 2024.

HT is open to all eligible farmers and land managers, including those new to CS and those with existing CS and Environmental Stewardship (ES) agreements.  HT agreements are 5, 10 and sometimes 20-year agreements which support farmers and land managers to maintain some of our most environmentally important sites, including Sites of Special Scientific Interest, commons and woodlands. These are usually in places that need complex management, such as creating or restoring habitats, and improving woodland.

DEFRA wish to encourage applications for agri-environment options from all farmers and land managers, not just those who have already been approached by a Natural England adviser. In particular, applications are welcome from those who want to protect, restore, enhance or create habitats, such as flower rich hay meadows, heathland, moorland, and wood pasture, as well as managing other aspects of their land.

Click here for details on the Countryside Stewardship Higher Tier

 

Environmental land management schemes: details of actions and payments

26.01.2023

DEFRA has published further information on the growth and rollout of  their environmental land management schemes.   

It includes the full range of actions, payment rates and when they’ll be available.  

This includes updates on:

Future Farming Resilience Support

Don't forget if you would like to discuss these options with an independent farm business adviser under the Future Farming Resilience programme please contact us by emailing info@northdevonplus.co.uk with FFR in the subject line or calling 01237 428834.