07 Feb Countryside Productivity Small Grant Scheme
The new Countryside Productivity Small Grant Scheme has opened today for farmers in England, covering the livestock, dairy, arable and horticultural sectors to purchase equipment to improve the productivity of their farms.
The grant provides 40% grant funding towards specific pieces of agricultural equipment which help achieve improvements in either animal welfare, resource efficiency or nutrient management. The 40% grant is for a minimum of £3,000 (i.e. minimum £7,500 spend) up to a maximum of £12,000 (£30,000 spend).
The scheme has a specific list of items it will provide grant funding towards including:
- Cattle Equipment – e.g. mobile and fixed handling systems, cattle crushes, electronic weigh systems, calving detectors etc.
- Sheep Equipment – mobile and fixed handling systems, sheep handler and electronic weigh scales.
- Pig Equipment – fixed handling system, electronic weigh system etc.
- General Livestock Equipment – EID equipment, Auto EID drench gun, pasture plate meter etc.
- Precision Farming Equipment – standalone GPS units, variable rate controllers for sprayers and fertiliser spreaders and direct or strip till seed drills.
- Resource Management Equipment – umbilical hose reeler, heat recovery unit etc.
- Other General Equipment – electric scraper systems, humidity controls for grain drying, digital weather station linked to computer with software etc.
Each item has a minimum specification and has been allocated a standard cost which the grant will pay 40% towards. Farmers can purchase items which exceed the specification but will only receive a grant on the standard cost.
The items within the application are automatically scored on the degree they meet technical efficiency, animal health and welfare, health and safety and resource efficiency criteria.
Once the application is approved, farmers have 150 days in which to purchase the equipment applied for. The grant is paid in a single payment in arrears once copies of invoices for each item and a copy of a bank statement have been provided to prove the items have been paid for.
Items purchased with grant funding must be kept in good repair and used for the same purpose as set out in the original application for five years.
The application is online only and must be submitted by midday on 14th March 2018.
It is recommended farmers take advantage and apply this round. Future rounds of application have not been guaranteed as it is dependent on the level of uptake.
If you would like further information or help with an application please contact us.