Defra has opened the third round of its Farming and Forestry Improvement Scheme (FFIS) to help farming, forestry and horticultural businesses in England to become more efficient at using resources.
The scheme aims to help make businesses more profitable and resilient whilst reducing the impact of farming on the environment.
£10 million is available under the third round of the FFIS. The grant rate is up to 40% in non-upland areas, and up to 50% in upland areas and the maximum grant allowable per project has increased from £25,000 to £35,000 for this round. The minimum grant is £2,500.
The scheme will fund new profit-boosting green schemes that:
- Save energy and reduce carbon emissions.
- Reduce dependence on artificial fertilizers through better use of manures.
- Improve soil quality.
- Improve animal health and welfare.
- Save and recycle water.
- Promote woodland management by processing timber more efficiently.
Projects must fall within one of the following focus areas:
- Nutrient Management – eligible items include slurry injectors, mechanical slurry separation systems and Global Positioning Systems.
- Energy Efficiency – eligible items include heat exchangers, gel coolers and ice builders.
- Water Resource Management – eligible items include pipework specifically to intercept and divert roof water to a storage facility, rainwater harvesting equipment.
- Animal Health and Welfare – projects which bring about significant improvements in farm animal health and welfare.
- Forestry – eligible items include timber processors, forwarders, forestry trailers and tractor mounted forestry grabs.
The deadline for receipt of applications is 4 April 2014.