Sustainable Farming Incentive - Pilot Information (including PAYMENT RATES)

Hindsight

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
Honestly the arable options look better than I anticipated... I mean not great but I was expecting naff all tbh.
It says more than one standard can be applied to the same area of land. For example, the arable land standard, arable soils standard and hedgerow standard can all be applied to the same field, so:
Advanced arable land @ £74/ha looks fairly simple? Some rough grass/scrub strips, calibrate equipment, soil mapping, blah blah, few hoops but nothing truly awful.
Add on advanced arable soils @ £59/ha. Reduce tillage, use organic manure, cultivate across slopes, soil management plan, more blah. A lot of us do most of this already, doesn't look too onerous.
Add on introductory level hedges @ £16/100m. Don't cut all the hedges each year.
Add on intermediate level water buffers @ £29/100m. Decent grass buffer strips like many of us already have.
Obviously the devil's in the detail and we don't have anywhere near enough, but fag packet calculations suggest £55/ac could be had for arable land with a few ditches and hedges without too much hassle or cost. It could be workable/worthwhile but it's too soon to tell.
And goes without saying it's nowhere near as good as BPS.
I have a 2005 Entry Level Stewardship Manual I can lend you if you want to mug up on the exact rules in readiness. Its was the pretty sky blue book.
 

Hindsight

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
Do you think they are copying the options from that? I may have the manual, rather I definitely have it just a question of pinpointing the exact location
Hi, I have no idea - just thought I would make an off the cuff comment.

Having scanned the thread and the comments posted it had that smell of a similar 'Broad and Shallow' open to all environmental scheme - to give everyone an easy chance at a bit of cash. A couple of years ago I listened to a dry old local land agent postulating about the demise of BPS and what would replace it. He postulated about half the value of the BPS.

Looks as though a bit of financial encouragement for direct drilling but no stopping of heavy cultivations for the enthusiast.

As for uptake - well tell us the price of wheat going forward. I recall no one was going to bother with ELS for £30 ha but wheat was only £80 tonne, so everyone joined up. Who knows with this new scheme. Price of wheat will be a good indicator.

Cheers,
 

DrWazzock

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
The problem with all of this is it detracts from my core business which is cereal growing. Take your eye off that ball or mess around with some option that has to be fitted in and compromises the arable production and its very easy to drop half a ton per acre. So that's anything from £50 per acre off my bottom line, maybe £100.
I don't have staff I can delegate this stuff to. I need to remain focussed, so I'm out. I don't want the distraction or disruption.
That doesn't mean I don't care about wildlife or the environment. We have a wood that is left to it's own devices. We have large watercourse banks hosting all sorts of plants, insects and animals. Birds forage on overwintered stubbles. We have plenty of hedges. Just don't hassle about me about them. They are doing fine.
 
I must have missed it, only scanned, but given that there are different payment rates, even at the basic level, for arable and grassland, what happens when you are mixed ?

(can't believe I am even asking any questions, it's doomed to failure).
The NFU seminar this morning on this was interesting, mainly as they had 2 of their best advisers speaking...

One of the advisers said that if the scheme and options are not viable, then farmers will not take it up, and DEFRA will have failed dismally. "Doomed to failure" does seem a genuine risk...

The point that the funding cannot simply replace CS where the income foregone enviro payments, were "topped up" by the BPS was made strongly. Have DEFRA taken this onboard and understood it???

I have bailed out of HLS as I cannot be arsed with the pettyfogging aspects of the scheme any longer. Mid Tier GS4 might be the best option along with my STW scheme, and two fingers to SFI until it is properly funded.... or dropped.
 
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Hjcarter

Member
Couple of queries:
1)
Can someone point me to the Defra definition of 'tree', as opposed to, say, 'sapling', or 'bush'.
2)
Tree in an arable field: £10.
Tree in a grass field: £3.
Tree stood in a boundary between the two: ? Tree in a field in a rotation ?

(trying not to laugh here)
So, do I have an orchard or grassland with 5000 trees - one's not mentioned, the others worth 15 grand....
 
If it's not worth the effort on a farm then dont take it, if you like supporting wildlife and you get a few pennies for it then go for it. My only issue with it is I know my farm best and what works best and I dont want to be constricted by a pen pusher that knows fudge all
Spot on.

I thought that ELMS was going to bring us back to a simple set of options.... Fat chance :mad:
 
The piloting and implementation of the three future schemes will be funded by gradual reductions in BPS payments from 2021 to 2027. These subsidies, a legacy of the EU Common Agricultural Policy, are paid largely according to how much land a farmer has, rather than how much public benefit they are producing. The government is committed to redirecting this funding to increase sustainability in the farming sector.

It will exacerbate the bias towards large landowners hoovering up the money more than BPS ever did, due to the complexity of their proposals requiring a land agent or similar.
What happened to the DEFRA statements that a simple ELMS agreement should/could be achieved by a Farmer applicant, and not need Agents...?
 
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Yes you make a good point, vastly reduced management options so bad weather could mean no crop or breaching the rules. We will have to see if they will give derogations in some instances, they are talking about more flexibility and a light touch so it's possible
Wait until the micro managers get their teeth into this. The UK has a long tradition of gold plating EU regs and standards, those civil servants have not gone away and still want a job.... "light touch and flexible" is anathema as a concept or aim!
 

Formatted

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Sussex
If it's not worth the effort on a farm then dont take it, if you like supporting wildlife and you get a few pennies for it then go for it. My only issue with it is I know my farm best and what works best and I dont want to be constricted by a pen pusher that knows fudge all
then don't take government money
 

Hindsight

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
Distinct lack of 'Payment by results' in that little lot, which is exactly what I told you it would be months ago..........just a list of management rules to abide by like every other environmental scheme we've ever seen.
Just had a look around Twitter and a few wildlife folk have rumbled the scheme. The general view is the basic standards are paying for cross compliance measures - and thus not public goods. So looks as though the green blob will want more. This is after all Defra's way of still bunging a bit of cash to ease the end of BPS.
 
I must have missed it, only scanned, but given that there are different payment rates, even at the basic level, for arable and grassland, what happens when you are mixed ?

(can't believe I am even asking any questions, it's doomed to failure).
I particularly listened to see what the NFU interpretation of the SFI plans for grassland would be... vague uncertainty would appear to be the present state of affairs! I will be pleased to be advised differently
 

silverfox

Member
Location
Shropshire
@Clive time to speed dial the Defra people you had on here and ask them what happened to the simple schemes( not needing £5k spent on consultants that George Useless said we all spend)
Id suggest anyone thinking of this ,would be better off getting onto one of the wildlife offers or mid tier pronto.
 

Rejuvenating swards: Which option is best?

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Written by Brian McDonnell

Maintaining grass quality during mid-season grazing is important. Farmers can maintain quality by entering ideal grazing covers of 1,300 – 1,500kg DM/ha, and grazing down to a residual of 4cm every rotation.

If you are now in a situation where cows are not cleaning out paddocks as well as they should be, leading to the development of steamy grass within the sward, here are some options.

Common options for rejuvenating swards include:

  1. Take a silage cut, probably into bales, remove the material and start again with the aftermath...
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