Payments to manage uplands through EFS Higher

Date published: 11 May 2021

Applications for the fifth tranche of EFS Higher can now be made online up until 21 May.

Purple Moorgrass habitat.

The EFS Higher scheme seeks to bring important habitat under favourable management by offering payments to farmers to farm in line with an agreed management plan. Not only will farmers continue to produce quality stock from this land but they will also be playing a key role in helping to preserve and enhance its rich biodiversity.

Agreeing to manage habitats like purple moorgrass or moorland under the scheme can secure additional farm payments for a five year period. Eligible land can be viewed at DAERA’s Online Services and applications are simple to make. There is no commitment until DAERA prioritises all the applications.  If successful, businesses will then be asked to submit a management plan and will be given guidance to do so.

Due to the demand in previous years, DAERA intends to increase the number of agreements it issues this year. For those farmers who were unsuccessful with previous applications, it may be worth trying again this year.

For more information on the EFS:

  • visit the DAERA website 
  • Check if your land is eligible via DAERA’s Online Services
  • For assistance to complete your application, you can call the EFS Advisory Service on 0300 200 7848.

Notes to editors: 

  1. EFS supports farmers to implement environmentally beneficial actions and works on their land. It aims to protect and enhance biodiversity and water quality, and mitigate against climate change by sequestering carbon.
  2. It is anticipated the EFS Tranche 5 agreements will start on 1 January 2022 and run for five years to 31 December 2026. EFS Higher Level aims to deliver site-specific management of environmentally designated sites and other priority habitats. Agreements usually involve payment for implementing a particular grazing regime, and can include other measures such as scrub, bracken or rush control.
  3. Over 5,000 EFS agreements are in place after four tranches.
  4. The Environmental Farming Scheme is part funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).
  5. Follow DAERA on Twitter and Facebook
  6. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office.

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