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Farming Investment Fund opens with £27m of farm productivity grants

18th Nov 2021 / By Alistair Driver

Farmers are now able to apply for grants worth £27 million for a range of productivity-boosting equipment under the new Farming Investment Fund.

From Tuesday farmers, foresters and growers from across England are urged to apply for grants to buy new equipment and infrastructure to ‘help to improve efficiency and help us build back greener’.

The fund will be split across two strands:

Farming Equipment and Technology Fund

The Farming Equipment and Technology Fund will focus on smaller grants for equipment from a set list.

For pig farmers the equipment grants can be accessed for include:

  • Fixed Handling Systems
  • Electronic Pig Weighing and Sorting Facilities
  • Individual Electronic Weigh Systems
  • Weigh bars and weigh platforms
  • EID Handheld Recorder Devices
  • Thermal image cameras
  • Solar-powered electric fencing
  • Portable CO2 and ammonia analysers
  • Rainwater harvesting tanks
  • UV Water Treatment System
  • Various pieces of equipment for slurry management and use.

The FETF, which is based on the Countryside Productivity Small Grants scheme, will provide grants between £2k and £25k to buy items from a set list of equipment and technology. The application deadline is midday, January 7 2022.

Farming Transformation Fund 

The Farming Transformation Fund will cover more substantial technology, with the potential to transform business performance.

Based on the Countryside Productivity Large Grant scheme, it will provide grants between £35k and £500k.

This strand will focus initially on water management with grants available to improve water use on farms for things like crop irrigation and constructing on-farm reservoirs

The Farming Transformation Fund,

As part of the Animal Health and Welfare Pathway, Defra will be launching a new expanded grant offer late next year to co-fund investment in equipment, technology and infrastructure that will improve animal health and welfare. It will shortly be launching an online suggestions box to give farmers, vets, academics and other industry stakeholders the opportunity to suggest which capital items are included.

Applications for the Farming Transformation Fund can be made online with a new online eligibility checker to improve the application process for these grants as applicants will be able to check in advance their project suitability in relation to the scheme objectives. Projects that score highly enough against the scheme objectives will be invited to make a full application.

This will open from November 16 until January 12, 2022, with the deadline to complete full applications by June 30, 2022.

Farming Minister, Victoria Prentis said: “I’m pleased to offer support to eligible farmers through the new Farming Investment Fund to invest in technology and infrastructure to boost productivity and deliver environmental benefits

 “Investing in new technology and equipment on farm has a real impact on productivity and yields, as well as a benefit for the environment as we build on the historic commitments of COP 26.”