Cumbrian MP, Tim Farron is today calling on farmers to make the most of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affair's second round of the Farming & Forestry Improvement Scheme (FFIS) and apply for funding to help support their businesses.
The FFIS is a targeted small grant scheme providing support for farmers, foresters, agricultural contractors, woodland owners and horticultural businesses. This support is to enable them to improve their competitiveness by using resources more efficiently or improving animal health & welfare. This scheme aims to help make businesses more profitable & resilient whilst reducing the impact of farming on the environment.
Applicants can apply for grants of between £2,500 and £25,000 of the lifetime of the scheme. There are 5 themes in FFIS: Animal health & welfare; Nutrient management; Energy efficiency; Water management and Forestry. Round 2 of the FFIS has now been launch and the application form will be available for download from the Defra website from May 22nd 2012. Applications will close at 5:00pm on Tuesday 17th July 2012.
Commenting Tim said: "With the focus of CAP reform appearing to be around 'greening' the agricultural industry, this grant scheme is absolutely essential as a way to support farmers across Cumbria as they work hard at making their businesses a success while protecting the environment and maintaining very high levels of animal welfare.
"This is especially important to upland farmers who face much greater challenges. This will ensure they have the opportunity to apply for significant grants through the scheme to support their businesses."
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