12 November 2020

 

A capacity audience of 1,000 farmers registered for an online Farming Connect webinar when two invited presenters, one a leading Wales-based environmental specialist and the second a policy official from Welsh Government, explained how the Welsh Government’s recently announced Farm Business Grant (FBG) Yard Coverings scheme will help reduce the overall amount of dirty water and slurry on Welsh farms.

The aim of this scheme is to provide farmers with financial support of between £3,000 and £12,000 (up to a maximum of 40% of the overall cost of improvement works) to help them improve existing infrastructure, in order to support improvements in on-farm nutrient management.  

The webinar was chaired by Eirwen Williams, director of rural programmes with Menter a Busnes, which alongside Lantra Wales, delivers Farming Connect on behalf of the Welsh Government. Mrs Williams said that the numbers participating in the webinar demonstrated the industry’s keenness to address agri-pollution and reduce the amount of contaminated water on Welsh farms. Mrs Williams also set out the support and guidance available through Farming Connect’s Advisory Service and one-to-one surgeries.

“With up to 6,000 euros available for every eligible farm business, many will find they need specialist advice to identify the areas where they can make the most effective improvements,” said Mrs Williams.

Mrs Williams explained that there are more than 100 advisors available through eight firms approved to deliver advice through Farming Connect’s Advisory Service. She emphasised that tailored support, funded by up to 80% for individual applications and fully funded for groups of between three and eight businesses (two for joint ventures) facing similar challenges, is available to all businesses registered with Farming Connect. 

“You’ll find a list of all our approved advisory firms on the Farming Connect website.

“I want to emphasise that any guidance you seek either as an individual or within a group application, will be completely confidential, between the farmer or farmers and their selected advisor,” said Mrs Williams.

Any registered farmer wanting specific one-to-one advice, tailored to their requirements, can access one fully funded, confidential ‘surgery’. This can last from anything between a few minutes for one simple query to a more detailed consultation lasting up to one hour.  

“You can access these surgeries by either contacting your local development officer or the Farming Connect Service Centre and once you’ve registered your interest, we will ask the adviser to contact you directly to arrange a mutually convenient time,” said Mrs Williams. 

Due to any Covid-19 restrictions in place when support is required, the one-to-one surgeries can be provided digitally or over the phone. You can discuss this at the time of expressing interest, either via the Service Centre or your local development officer. 

To download the Welsh Government’s FBG Yard Coverings rules booklet click here.

For further information on Farming Connect services, click here or call the Farming Connect Service Centre on 08456 000 813. 

Farming Connect, which is delivered by Menter a Busnes and Lantra, has received funding through the Welsh Government Rural Communities - Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.


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