We want to better support those who want to enter farming and develop land-based businesses. One idea that we said we were keen to test through a pilot was incubation: providing tactical support to young businesses through the early stages of development. We put out a call for proposals from organisations to lead these projects through the new entrant support pilot. The bids we received over the summer were impressive. Now that we have pilot leads, you can apply to take part in the pilot.
The Brooks Family joined the pilot to help us improve the Sustainable Farming Incentive. For over a century, the family has worked on South Thorness Farm, which is found on the north-west coast of the Isle of Wight, within the Hamstead Heritage Coast Area Of Natural Beauty. Listen to how sisters Jess and Sarah, along with their parents Adrian and Joyce, run through the management of their farm and their decision to join the pilot.
In the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot, we provided farmers with 3 different land management plan templates. Each template was developed through tests and trials. Farmer Martin Hole took part in the Cuckmere and Pevensey Levels test and trial. He explains how the vision for his farm, and the landscape in which he lives, has been supported by land management planning.
We asked farmers helping us co-design the Sustainable Farming Incentive to share their experience in a video diary. In this video, Michael Orchard gives us a tour of his livestock farm in the Peak District National Park. He shares the improvements he’d like to see come out of the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot.
It can be difficult for farmers who wish to retire or leave the industry to do so. A lack of capital can prevent them. We think that our Lump Sum Exit Scheme could help them. Last year, we ran a consultation with farmers and other experts, and the findings supported this view. In this post, I'll share a summary and our response. I'll also cover delinked payments and an opportunity for you to help shape our work.
One goal of Defra’s Future Farming and Countryside Programme is to help farmers and land managers achieve bigger, better environmental benefits. There’s a lot that farmers can do individually on their own land, but there are often circumstances where it makes more sense for several people or businesses to join forces and collaborate on something that benefits all of them, as well as the environment. We want to encourage more collaboration like this.