Tailored business support for farmers during the agricultural transition will be made available from August this year, Defra has confirmed.

The government has set out plans for a seven-year agricultural transition to a new system that will reward farmers for environmental improvements alongside food production on their land.

The Future Farming Resilience Fund aims to provide business support to farmers and land managers to help them navigate the changes over this period. Following a competition launched in March, £10.7 million of funding has been awarded to 19 organisations to support farmers and land managers who are in receipt of Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) payments.

The support will be available, free of charge, from August this year through to March 2022 and any farmer or land manager currently in receipt of BPS is eligible to apply.

Defra has urged farmers to sign up to the scheme, which aims to deliver direct benefits to farmers and land managers by enabling them to:  

- help understand the changes that are happening as a result of the Agricultural Transition;

- identify how, what and when you may need to adapt your business model; 

- access tailored support to address these changes. 

The lessons learned will feed into the design of a final phase which will be available from 2022-2024.

Farming minister Victoria Prentis said: “We know that change can be challenging, which is why we are committed to helping farmers and land managers throughout the agricultural transition to feel supported to make the best decisions for their farms, families and future.

“As we continue to co-design and develop the future schemes it is important that the industry has access to expert support and knowledge. So I urge farmers and land managers to sign up to the Future Farming Resilience Fund now to ensure that come August they are able to use the help that is available to them.”