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The SFI pilot: designing the improved offer with farmers 

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SFI pilot farmers discuss their work at a workshop

Since 2021, over 800 farmers in England have been testing an early version of the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI), delivering 10,000 actions on their land. In this post, I’ll explain how farmers in the pilot have helped us to shape the current and future offer. I'll also include a video which gives an overview of our work.

Watch: future-proofing our farming business with SFI

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Mother and son team, Tracey and Will, run a dairy and beef farm in Langley Mill, Derbyshire. In this film, they talk through the SFI actions they’ve included in their agreement, including herbal leys in rotational pasture, hedgerows, soils, legume mix with grasses and pest management. They describe how SFI helps them to balance the books, take care of the environment and build the resilience of their farm business.

New and improved actions for upland farmers

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Snow on upland landscape

Last week, we published a post about the Agricultural Transition Plan update. The update includes the full range of Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) actions — new and updated — with their payment rates.  In this post, we will focus on the new actions relevant to those who farm in the uplands, both moorland and non-moorland grassland.  

Farming podcast: Learning more about SFI in 2023 with the NFU

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In this episode of the Farming podcast, Jonathan Marsden, Head of Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) talks to Claire Robinson, Senior Countryside Adviser for the National Farmers Union (NFU). The pair discuss what you need to know as a farmer to get ready for SFI this year.

Watch: How the Sustainable Farming Incentive works hand in hand with arable crop production

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SFI and arable farming Caroline-Knox

We went to the Isle of Wight to meet SFI agreement holder Caroline Knox. In this film, Caroline explains how the Sustainable Farming Incentive works hand in hand with commercial maize and rye production on her farm.

Apply for the Sustainable Farming Incentive

The Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) is now open for applications via the Rural Payments service. Through the SFI, farmers will be paid for looking after the natural environment in the course of their farming. This initial offer will pay farmers for taking care of their soil or assessing the condition of moorland. In this post, we'll share more about the application process.

How farmers are helping us to design the first of our environmental land management schemes

Wildflowers on edge of field Copyright Natural England

In this blog post, I’ll share how we have worked with the farming community to develop the standards for the Sustainable Farming Incentive from 2021.