Funding Available For Farm Resource Efficiency Projects

The second round of funding from the £400,000 Farm Resource Efficiency Programme (FREP) has been launched by Yorkshire Forward Regional Development Agency building on the success of the pilot programme which closed to applications earlier this year.

The FREP programme aims to improve the economic performance of livestock holdings by introducing environmental technologies into the day-to-day activities of the business.

The successful first round bids have demonstrated that farmers could provide environmental benefits whilst reducing their costs. Average cost savings are estimated to be £39 per hectare, with fixed costs reduced by 2.4% and variable costs by 4.6%. The projects are expected to make annual carbon savings that are the equivalent of driving 36,000 miles in a land rover and using enough recycled water (rather than clean water) to fill 2.5 Olympic sized wimming pools.

Andy Tordoff, Assistant director of Rural Renaissance and Tourism for Yorkshire Forward, said: "Yorkshire Forward is committed to working with farming communities to provide them with the support they need to help them to incorporate new technologies into their businesses.

"If these farming businesses are to survive and thrive in the current economic climate it is essential that they take advantage of every opportunity available to help them to cut costs and boost profits."

The range of environmental technologies that are eligible for support has been widened to include renewable power, renewable heat, rainwater harvesting, water recycling systems and manure management. Applicants can benefit from up to £20,000 at a rate of 40% against eligible expenditure with a minimum capital investment of £5,000.

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