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Over 95% of BPS 2018 payments made to Welsh farmers

11 December 2018

Since the BPS 2018 payment window opened on Monday 3rd December, over 95% (14,700) of Welsh BPS 2018 claimants have been paid either a BPS 2018 payment or a loan payment. Please see the Welsh Government website for further details.

Additional £80m Rural Development Programme funding announced in Wales

11 December 2018

The Welsh Government has confirmed additional funding will be made available under the Rural Development Programme as follows:-

  • £62.9m for the extension of Glastir Advanced, Commons and Organic contracts to 2021
  • Additional application round of Glastir Small Grants
  • £16m for the Sustainable Production Grant
  • Continued support under the Farm Business Grant

Please see the Welsh Government website for the news release.

BPS 2018 payments made to more than 65% of English claimants

06 December 2018

The RPA has confirmed that BPS 2018 payments were made to 55,179 claimants (over 65%) on Monday 3rd December. The RPA says it is "on track" to pay at least 90% of claimants by 31st December 2018. Please see GOV.UK for further information.

Marian Spain takes over as Natural England's Interim Chief Executive

04 December 2018

Following the departure in November of Natural England's CEO, James Cross, an Interim Chief Executive, Marian Spain, has taken over this week. Please see GOV.UK for further information.

EU Withdrawal Agreement approved by EU leaders

25 November 2018

The EU Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration on the future relationship between the UK and the EU have been approved by the 27 EU leaders at a special meeting of the European Council today (25th November 2018). This now needs to be voted on by the UK Parliament, which is expected to take place in early December 2018.

Prime Minister holds press conference at 10 Downing Street

15 November 2018

Prime Minister Theresa May has held a press conference in 10 Downing Street and her statement is available on GOV.UK.

Prime Minister updates House of Commons on Brexit negotiations

15 November 2018

Prime Minister Theresa May has updated the House of Commons on progress with the Brexit negotiations. Please see the GOV.UK website for the Prime Minister's statement.

James Cross steps down as Natural England's CEO

09 November 2018

James Cross has stepped down today from his role as Natural England's Chief Executive and Marian Spain, an existing Natural England Board member, will be taking over as interim Chief Executive "shortly". Further details are given on GOV.UK.

Changes to valuation of in-calf cattle for TB compensation in Wales take effect today

01 November 2018

In September, the Welsh Government announced that there would be changes to the valuation of in-calf cattle in Wales for TB compensation. Those changes take effect from today (1st November 2018) and mean that written proof of Pregnancy Diagnosis will now be required when cattle are being valued. Further information is available on the Welsh Government website.

CAAV supports anti-money laundering Flag It Up campaign

26 October 2018

The CAAV is lending its support to the Government's campaign to raise awareness of anti-money laundering requirements for those involved in property sales and purchases. The Flag It Up campaign will help professionals involved in property sales to identify suspicious activity which may be connected to money laundering and to report it to the authorities.

Further information can be found in the Government press release:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-campaign-to-prevent-properties-bought-with-dirty-money

Gove announces new funding for pollinator habitat mapping

25 October 2018

Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, is launching a new £60,000 fund today (25th October) to "develop and test pollinator habitat mapping". Funding is also being provided to two projects to create pollinator-friendly landscapes: The Bumblebee Conservation Trust's "West Country Buzz" project in North Devon and The Martin Down farmer "Super Cluster" in Hampshire. Further information is available on GOV.UK.

Fisheries Bill introduced to Parliament

25 October 2018

A Fisheries Bill is to be introduced to Parliament today (25th October). The Bill is to give the UK control of who may fish in UK waters and what terms apply. Further information is available on GOV.UK.

Pilot Forestry Investment Zone launched in Cumbria

18 October 2018

A new pilot Forestry Investment Zone has been launched in Cumbria today. The pilot is to run for two years and "will be used as a test-case for rolling out the initiative more widely around the country". Please see GOV.UK for further information.

BSE Case Confirmed in Aberdeenshire

18 October 2018

The BBC News website is reporting that there has been a case of BSE confirmed on a farm in Aberdeenshire. Further information is also available on the Scottish Government website.

Government appoints Shale Gas Commissioner

08 October 2018

The Government has appointed a Shale Gas Commissioner to provide a link between local communities, the shale gas industry and regulators. Former MP Natascha Engel will take up the new post this week.

Natural Resources Wales confirms position on pheasant shooting

21 September 2018

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has confirmed that it will not renew leases for pheasant shooting rights on land that it manages when they end in March 2018. Further information is available on the NRW website.

£3m funding for Catchment Sensitive Farming advice on reducing ammonia emissions from agriculture

18 September 2018

It has been confirmed that £3 million funding is being made available for a specialist team under the Catchment Sensitive Farming partnership to help implement the measures set out in the new Code of Good Agricultural Practice (COGAP) for Reducing Ammonia Emissions. Further information is available on GOV.UK.

Use BPS time window for change, says CAAV

12 September 2018

Press release

12 September 2018

 

Use BPS time window for change, says CAAV

The new Agriculture Bill has fired a starting gun for England’s farmers to manage post-Brexit change, according to the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.

Farmers have been awaiting details on what post-Brexit policy and payments will look like – and now they know, they should act, says Jeremy Moody, secretary and adviser to the CAAV. “We have been given a clear timeframe for the complete removal of BPS for English farmers.  BPS is to be phased out from 2021 to 2027 and then it will be gone. That gives a time window in which farmers and their advisers should review their businesses, consider how best to handle the likely erosion of margins, and deliver the necessary changes.”

Based on his own calculations, Mr Moody expects BPS to be cut by 5% in 2021, with those receiving larger payments seeing cuts of up to 25%, with further phasing out thereafter (see table). “This will release money for new land management schemes – although environmental payments will not replace that loss in margins.”

Farmers therefore need to plan ahead, whether to control costs or change enterprise, embrace innovation and new technology, make new investments, win planning permissions, manage succession, exploit assets, add value or improve marketing. 

“Leaving it too late will see the business on the receiving end of change, not managing it,” explains Mr Moody. “The task is to find how best the business and the family can achieve and retain a financial margin in a more commercial and challenging world.”

Some of the money removed from BPS will go towards grants to help farmers become more efficient and productive, but there will be a limited time window in which they can be claimed. Defra has also confirmed that payments will no longer be linked to active farming – enabling retirement and freeing up land for change.

“While we inevitably await much detail, the Government has now clearly stated the direction of travel and a timetable for the progressive loss of BPS,” says Mr Moody. “With that knowledge, farmers now need to drive change in their businesses, with the support of professional advisers over a sensible time frame. After a period of great uncertainty, they can now lay solid and effective foundations for the future profitability of farming and rural land use, replacing income support with improved commercial viability.”

 

Table – Likely changes in BPS, based on CAAV calculations

2020 Payment

£15,000

£30,000

£50,000

£80,000

£120,000

£250,000

2021

£14,250

£28,250

£46,500

£70,500

£102,500

£201,500

2022

£12,200

£24,400

£39,900

£60,400

£87,900

£172,700

2023

£10,200

£20,400

£33,200

£50,400

£73,200

£143,900

2024

£8,150

£16,300

£26,600

£40,300

£58,600

£115,100

2025

£6,100

£12,200

£19,900

£30,200

£43,900

£86,400

2026

£4,100

£8,200

£13,300

£20,100

£29,300

£57,600

2027

£2,000

£4,100

£6,700

£10,000

£14,700

£28,800

2028

£0

£0

£0

£0

£0

£0

 

 

About the CAAV

The Central Association of Agricultural Valuers (CAAV) is a specialist professional body representing, qualifying and briefing over 2700 members practising in a diverse range of agricultural and rural work throughout England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

CAAV members are agricultural and rural valuers who provide professional advice and valuation expertise on issues affecting the countryside from tenancy matters to sales and purchase of farms and land, from taxation and compulsory purchase to auctioneering, and from conservation issues to farming structures.

We are always happy to speak to the press – if you have any queries please contact Olivia Cooper, partner at Agri-hub PR services, on 01392 840009 or email Olivia@agri-hub.co.uk.

 

Agriculture Bill to be introduced into Parliament today

12 September 2018

The Agriculture Bill is being introduced into Parliament today and sets out in broad terms how the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) will be replaced in England by an Environmental Land Management system which is to use "public money for public goods" and will begin tests and trials next year (2019) and pilots from 2021.

  • BPS will remain "on the same basis as now" for 2019 and 2020, with simplifications being made where possible. There will then be a 7 year "agricultural transition" period from 2021 to 2027 when BPS will be phased out.
  • Capping is to be applied to all BPS claimants, rather than just those with high payments as suggested in DEFRA's Health and Harmony consultation, but those with higher payments will be subject to a bigger reduction.
  • BPS payments are to be "delinked" during the "agricultural transition" period (2021-2027) from the existing requirement to carry out an "agricultural activity" on agricultural land. Instead, the payments "may be calculated according to money received in previous years", so could see an historic reference period applied.
  • BPS 2027 will be the final year of direct payments.

Further details will be given on this website once the Bill has been published.

DEFRA announces new pilot scheme for 2,500 seasonal workers

06 September 2018

The Home Secretary and Environment Secretary have announced a nationwide, two year pilot to allow fruit and vegetable farmers to employ seasonal workers from outside the EU. 2,500 seasonal workers will be permitted to come into the UK annually. The Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme pilot will be run by two operators who will be announced in "due course". They will oversee placement of workers. The pilot is due to start in spring 2019 and will run until 31st December 2020.

Further information is available on GOV.UK and the announcement of the pilot has been welcomed by the Scottish Secretary, David Mundell

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