NFU Cymru responds to Welsh Government funding announcement

29 April 2024

Aled Jones

NFU Cymru is pleased that the Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs, Huw Irranca-Davies, has today (29 April 2024) confirmed two funding schemes to support investment in on-farm infrastructure.

These schemes will utilise the £20m of funding that was originally announced in October 2022, through the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru co-operation agreement.

NFU Cymru President Aled Jones said: “I am pleased that the £20m originally committed by Welsh Government in October 2022, to support compliance with the water quality regulations, will be made available through the Nutrient Management Investment Scheme and the Small Grants – Yard Coverings Scheme, that will open for Expressions of Interest shortly.

NFU Cymru's key asks

“Earlier this month, NFU Cymru presented a list of key asks to Welsh Government in response to the impacts of the wet weather on Welsh agriculture. In order to build longer term resilience we asked Welsh Government to bring forward the £20m previously committed to support farmer compliance with the Control of Agricultural Pollution Regulations. This was a message I was able to reiterate when the Cabinet Secretary hosted the Extreme Weather Summit recently.

“Given that the government’s own 2021 impact assessment highlighted a £360m industry wide upfront cost to comply with these regulations, it is crucial that this funding is released without further delay to support the industry. Whilst we await more details on the grant schemes, I am pleased that the Cabinet Secretary has increased the grant intervention rate to 50%, for certain project costs. Costs have spiralled since the original impact assessment was undertaken and cash flow is a serious concern on many farms, therefore this additional contribution towards project costs is to be welcomed.


“The Cabinet Secretary has highlighted that making this announcement now will provide an opportunity for applicants to engage with local planning authorities. Our members across Wales report to us the unnecessary difficulties that they continue to face in relation to obtaining planning approval for new infrastructure to help them meet regulatory requirements and environmental betterment. We have asked for a Wales wide review of local planning authorities and NRW’s approach to applications for new infrastructure to streamline and reduce the significant administrative cost and burden associated with making environmental improvements on farm.

“The levels of stress and anxiety within the farming community is a key concern to us, the impact of many months of wet weather, together with concerns over agricultural pollution regulations, future farm policy and animal health issues, has taken its toll on many. The need for an empathetic and pragmatic approach to all those who engage with farmers at this time, is paramount. I was pleased that the Cabinet Secretary, in his words to us at the recent Summit, recognised the importance of this, something that he has repeated in his statement today.


“I would urge anyone who is struggling, to reach out for support. As a union we are committed to helping and supporting in any way we can. The Cabinet Secretary has highlighted the importance of contacting Rural Payments Wales as soon as possible to discuss options or request a derogation. Additionally, farming charities provide an invaluable service to farming families. Anyone who is struggling needs to know that you are not alone there is help and support available.”

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