EFS opens for business!

Date published: 19 August 2021

With the Environmental Farming Scheme (EFS) open for Wider applications until the 10 September, now is the right time to think about what you could do on your farm with its help. The scheme provides opportunities to improve water protection or biodiversity on the farm and many options also help in combating climate change.


View the full range of available options or search for DAERA EFS Wider.

Some 5,000 farmers have already joined the scheme and some have joined with CAFRE to showcase the work they’ve done through the new Farm Habitat Technology Demonstration Farms. Why not book a virtual or on-site farm tour on the CAFRE website and see what these farmers have done through EFS.

Could EFS work for you?

These farm tours may give you some ideas of what you could achieve with EFS support. For example, have you a length of field boundary or stone wall that could be re-instated?  Is there a watercourse on your land where you could fenced off a 2 or 10 metre riparian buffer strip, either planted with trees or simply left ungrazed, to protect your river or stream from pollution?  If you grow crops, would you consider managing field margins to encourage pollinating insects or maybe provide feeding areas to support the bird life on the farm?  Perhaps you would like to plant a small area of native woodland, a tree corridor, or traditional orchard?  Have you considered Organic Farming or keeping Irish Moiled cattle?

The EFS Wider level can provide funding to help establish all these environmental options on your farm and more and other items such as protective fencing, field gates, water troughs and pasture pumps can be selected for options where they are required.


The application period will be open for 4 weeks until Friday 10 September. All information is available online and it’s important that this is read before making an application. An EFS Helpline is available on 0300 200 7842 if you have any questions or queries can be emailed to efs@daera-ni.gov.uk.

Notes to editors: 

  1. View the full range of EFS options.
  2. Applicants are strongly advised to read the relevant Information Sheet before applying for an option.
  3. Applications can only be made online but help is available through the EFS Helpline number 0300 200 7842. Applications for tranche 5 EFS Wider must be submitted online before midnight on Friday 10 September 2021.
  4. Some amendments have been made to the scheme for Tranche 5. The Option ‘Hedge laying including two protective fences’ and the capital item ‘Drinking trough pipework’ will not be available. Applicants will, however, still be able to avail of funding for both drinking troughs and drinking trough bases in association with the applicable EFS Wider Options.
  5. Information on all the Technology Demonstration Farms, details of the upcoming Habitat TDF training events and how you can book onto one of these are available on the CAFRE website. View on the CAFRE website or search under TDF or Events sections.
  6. The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) and the European Union are funding the establishment of this network of Technology Demonstration Farms across Northern Ireland as part of the Rural Development Programme under the Innovation Technology Evaluation Demonstration (ITED) Scheme.
  7. The Environmental Farming Scheme is part funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).
  8. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
  9. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office: pressoffice.group@daera-ni.gov.uk.

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