As a farmer, I am only too aware of the financial pressures which force farmers to make short-term decisions to address an immediate need. This isn’t always ideal for the environment and the sustainability of farming in the longer term. The marketplace is very good at driving the efficient production of high-quality grain, meat, milk and vegetables for today and tomorrow, but less so at rewarding high water quality, great soil or increasing the numbers of birds and insects over time. In this post, I’ll explain how the Sustainable Farming Incentive will start to redress the balance and how it will reward farmers for delivering environmental benefits as well as efficient food production.
We plan to launch the Sustainable Farming Incentive in June. Today we can share the final standards and payment rates, our approach to the applications process and how to prepare, In this post, I’ll provide an overview and share links to further information on GOV.UK. I’ll also explain how farmers have directly shaped the scheme through the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot, tests and trials, engagement sessions, co-design activity and discussions.
I recently joined the Sustainable Farming Incentive team to help develop some of the standards for 2022/23. In particular, those focused on upland farming and moorland management. In this post, I'll share more about the Moorland and Rough Grazing Standard.