It is premature to shout from the rooftops “The King is dead. Long live the King” but nevertheless the Single Farm Payment regime is in terminal decline and we begin to see the future in the form of the Sustainable Farming Incentive.
Following trials this new scheme will be launched in 2022 with a 10 week application window. individual land parcels may be entered into the scheme with, it is understood, no minimum or maximum amount. Agreements will run for three years with an annual option to amend. Tenants will be free to enter although DEFRA state that they would need to check the terms of their lease. Payment rates have been published and there are both introductory and intermediate levels of payment Advanced levels are anticipated to be introduced in future years.
As with the single farm payment there will be the need to consider the requirements of the scheme but, despite the potential reduction in subsidy income represented by the new scheme, many will perceive benefits in signing up for it. The time for a decision is approaching fast.