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Government makes £27m available for farmers, foresters and growers to boost productivity

19 November 2021

Farmers across Leicestershire and the UK can benefit from a £27 million pot to invest in productivity-boosting equipment as the Farming Investment Fund has now opened for applications.

If you’re a farmer, forester or grower, the Government is urging you to apply for grants to buy new equipment and infrastructure to help improve efficiency in your business (reducing costs for you) and to reduce carbon emissions as part of tackling the climate crisis.  Green improvements could include solar-powered electric fences, water treatment systems that use ultraviolet light rather than chemicals and cameras for monitoring livestock rather than vehicles.

The fund is split across two strands:

The Farming Equipment and Technology Fund provides smaller grants (between £2,000 and £25,000) for equipment from a set list, including electronic seeders and chemical-free disinfection systems. You can see the list   The deadline for the Farming Equipment and Technology Fund is the 7 January 2022 at midday.

The Farming Transformation Fund (with grants between £35,000 and £500,000) deals with more substantial technology, with the potential to transform the performance of your business. The initial focus is on water management with grants available to improve water use on farms for things like crop irrigation and constructing on-farm reservoirs. See more detail The Water Management grant will close for applications on 12 January 2022.

Farming Minister, Victoria Prentis said: “Investing in new technology and equipment on farm has a real impact on productivity and yields, as well as a benefit for the environment.”

The farming industry will play a crucial role in helping this Government reach its Net Zero ambitions and this money is part of a series of commitments in the Net Zero Strategy. These include a £124 million boost to the Nature for Climate Fund, helping meet commitments to restore approximately 280,000 hectares of peat in England by 2050 and treble woodland creation in England by the end of this Parliament.

The Government is also introducing a range of reforms to incentivise sustainable farming practices, rewarding farmers for producing public goods such as better air and water quality, protecting wildlife, soil health and animal welfare.

As Direct Payments are phased out over the 7-year agricultural transition, this funding is part of the Government’s commitment to offer financial assistance to support farmers to invest in their businesses, to improve their productivity, manage the environment sustainably and deliver other public goods.