Farmers in England now have the chance to shape the future of Environmental Land Management (ELM) scheme by taking part in one of six online webinars.
The conversations will take place online during July to facilitate industry discussion on the post-Brexit farming scheme.
ELM would see farmers paid for work that enhances the environment, such as tree or hedge planting, river management to mitigate flooding, or creating habitats.
Moving away from a system that pays farmers for the total amount of land farmed, the scheme would instead pay for ‘public goods’.
But concerns have been raised that ELM 'risked failure' if the scheme did not engage more with the UK's smaller and more remote farmers.
Complex bureaucracy, lack of trusted advisory support and poor internet connections were key issues that prevented farmers from getting involved, researchers said in a study published this week.
Defra farming minister Victoria Prentis said the webinars were a chance for farmers to 'have their say' and help 'shape the UK's future approach' to farming.
“Many farmers are already contributing directly to the co-design of ELM by participating in the ongoing tests and trials," she said.
“I would encourage all those interested to sign up to an event and have their voice heard.”
While farmers are encouraged to attend a webinar, a policy discussion document on Citizen Space will provide those who can’t with the opportunity to respond.
When will the webinars be held?
Farmers interested in attending any event can sign up via Eventbrite, with a full list of the available dates below:
• Wednesday, 1 July – 12:00-1:30 pm
• Tuesday, 7 July – 6:00-7:30 pm
• Thursday, 16 July – 8:30-10:00 am
• Thursday, 23 July – 12:00-1:30 pm
• Tuesday, 28 July – 8:30-10:00 am
• Thursday, 30 July - 6:00-7:30 pm
The deadline to share views is 31 July 2020.