New slurry grants open to farmers

Farmers investing in improvements to slurry management could receive extra funding ahead of a major grant scheme later this year.

Building new slurry storage will require significant capital investment, so to help with this, the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) will be offering grants to help with creating covered slurry stores.

This will help with the future grant that is expected to be for new or substantially enlarged or reconstructed stores with an impermeable, fixed, flexible or floating cover.

As of this Autumn, farmers, land managers, foresters or horticulturalists will be able to apply for funding to support investment in slurry systems from the Farming Investment Fund.

Air and water quality are of increasing concern and regulations to prevent pollution are becoming ever tighter.  This is of particular concern where phosphates are able to leach into water.

Nitrate Vulnerable Zone (NVZ) rules now apply across most of the UK and livestock producers expect rules to come into force that will require six months of slurry storage.

In addition, the Farming Rules for Water bring more rules for slurry spreading. However, it has been confirmed that Autumn manure spreading has not been banned.

As one commentator remarked, farmers might as well take advantage of the grants to help pay for the law change. However, the grant scheme is unlikely to cover the full cost of works, which could cause problems if the landlord or tenant is unable to fund the remainder.

Want to access grant funding for your business? Get in touch with our specialists today.