DAERA has announced the opening of the Pound 300million Single Application and Map Service and Entitlements Transfer Service from 1 March 2023.
Farm businesses are being encouraged to apply early as these payments represent the main income for many local farmers.
DAERA's Director of Area-based Schemes Division, Dr Jason Foy, said: "We are asking farm businesses to submit their applications as soon as possible from 1 March onwards, to allow adequate time to check all their information and avoid unnecessary penalties. Entitlement Transfer applications must be submitted by Tuesday 2 May. Single Applications must be submitted by Monday 15 May, to avoid late claim penalties. The last date to submit Single Applications is Friday 9 June."
"If they have any problems or questions, farmers can get support from our Advisory Service helpline on 0300 200 7848, our website, or at a local DAERA Direct office," Dr Foy added.
Applications to the 2023 Single Application and Maps Service, and Entitlements Transfer Service can be made via DAERA's Online Services from 1 March.
The Single Application is the method for claiming any of the following schemes:
- Basic Payment Scheme (BPS);
- Young Farmers' Payment (YFP);
- Regional Reserve Entitlement allocation or top up (as a Young Farmer or New Entrant);
- Environmental Farming Scheme (EFS);
- Farm Woodland Premium Scheme (FWPS);
- Farm Woodland Scheme (FWS);
- Forest Expansion Scheme (Annual Premia);
- Small Woodland Grant Scheme (SWGS); or
- Protein Crops Scheme.
Farmers should also use the Single Application and Map Service to notify the DAERA of any changes to their land in 2023. This should be done as early as possible to avoid delays in payment.
DAERA has also announced that the Protein Crops Scheme has been extended for another year in 2023 given the success of the two-year pilot.
Farmers will receive Pound 330 per hectare in addition to their Basic Payment. The environmental benefits from the scheme including reducing the need to import animal feed and the associated carbon footprint. The scheme represents an important investment in promoting sustainable and diversified agriculture here. The maximum funding available under this scheme is Pound 330,000 in 2023.
From 2023 DAERA will also be introducing a new 'Secure Messaging Service' as a way of communicating with customers. This new service is secure, convenient, and environmentally friendly. The Secure Messaging Service will be rolled out gradually to replace previous means of communication such as letters. Customers will be contacted directly by DAERA when a new Secure Message is available for them to view online.