Defra has recently published the details about its upcoming Slurry Infrastructure Grant as part of the Farming Transformation Fund. The initial online checker will open on the 6th of December 2022 and will close on the 31st of January 2023.
What is the purpose of the grant?
The Slurry Infrastructure Grant has been designed to help beef, dairy and pig farmers in England invest in slurry infrastructure and nutrient management systems, with the aim being that this will help reduce the risks of water and air pollution in the future.
The grant has been designed to allow farmers to go beyond the minimum requirement of four months' storage under current regulations to meet Farming Rules for Water rules. This reduces the need to spread manures unnecessarily due to lack of storage on farm.
Similarly, to the other schemes under the Farming Transformation Fund there is a two-step application process. The first stage is an online 'eligibility tracker' which opens on the 6th of December 2022 until the 31st of January 2023. This is then followed by the second full application process for those with projects that score highest on the eligibility checker. The minimum grant you can apply for is £25,000 for each applicant business and grants will cover up to 50% of the eligible project costs.
This grant will be paid in arrears, and you can make a maximum of 3 claims over the duration of the project. You must have sufficient funds to pay for all items in full before claiming your grant payments and you can use loans, overdrafts and other grants (such as BPS or agri-environment schemes) to demonstrate this.
Slurry capacity increases to allow over 6 months storage is permitted, however, grant funding will be capped at existing livestock numbers. If you choose to exceed this then any additional storage requirement will need to be privately funded.
For more information on the grant and how to apply, the NFU has a thorough article explaining all the details of the Slurry Infrastructure Grant: Farming Transformation Fund – Slurry Infrastructure grant – NFUonline
You can also read more about the scheme at the Defra website: GOV.UK | Farming Investment Fund – new Slurry Infrastructure grants coming in autumn 2022