Scottish Farmers & Crofters Reminded Of December Deadlines Looming

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Beef calf scheme, Sustainable Agricultural Capital Grants Scheme and Scrapie Monitoring Scheme applications all due on 31 December with AECS opening early in the New Year

NFU Scotland is reminding all its members of important deadlines that fall during this festive period.

In the next few days, applications to several important schemes will close while the new round for Scotland’s agri-environment scheme will open early in the New Year.

Applications to the Scottish Suckler Beef Support Scheme (SSBSS) 2021 close at midnight on 31 December. The beef calf scheme is worth around £40 million to the nation’s beef producers.  Submissions can be made online or by paper. Area offices remain closed and are only operating answer machine services. Scheme information is available here: https://www.ruralpayments.org/topics/all-schemes/scottish-suckler-beef-support-scheme/

The final deadline for submitting claims to the Sustainable Agricultural Capital Grants Scheme (SACGS) also falls on 31 December. Only items that are on farms or crofts, operational and supported with invoices and proof of payment by the 31 December deadline will be eligible for payment. Scottish Government has indicated that grant offers for unclaimed items by this date will be withdrawn. Details on how to claim are at: https://www.ruralpayments.org/news-events/last-chance-for-farmers-to-claim-sacgs-support.html

For those wishing to export sheep to Northern Ireland, the Scrapie Monitoring Scheme (SMS) was amended in November to allow for a new status that will support breeding sheep sales between Scotland and Northern Ireland. Applications for Scrapie Qualifying Status (SQS) must be completed by 31 December 2021.

The scrapie monitoring scheme is being facilitated by Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) on behalf of the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA).  Flock owners can get more information at: https://www.sruc.ac.uk/business-services/what-is-your-goal/veterinary-laboratory-services/sheep-and-goat-health-schemes/scrapie-monitoring-for-export/#Qualifying-Status

The Union also urges members to note that the 2022 Agri-Environment Climate Scheme application round will open on Monday 24 January and close on Friday 29 April 2022, with the closing date extended to Tuesday 31 May 2022 for collaborative applications.  Applications for Slurry Storage can be made during the main AECS window (Monday 24 January 2022 to Friday 29 April 2022); however, the deadline for stand-alone slurry store applications is Friday 24 June 2022.

For applications for Improving Public Access (IPA), there is a separate opening period, Monday 28 February 2022 to Friday 29 April 2022 inclusive.

NFU Scotland Vice President Robin Traquair said: “Time is running out to get your applications in to several key schemes, but a few hours of form filling will be time well spent.
“Many offices will be closed for some time over the last few days of the year, and the deteriorating Covid situation means greater reliance on online and telephone support to sort out queries.  I would urge you to start sooner rather than later to get your applications completed in case help is required.”

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