A further £30 million funding towards the small grants scheme for farmers has been confirmed today by the Government.
Defra has committed the financial boost towards the popular Countryside Productivity Small Grants scheme (CPSGS).
The scheme helps farmers buy the equipment they need to boost productivity and increase yields.
Grants of £3,000 - £12,000 are awarded to farmers to purchase equipment costing between £12,000 and £30,000.
The first round of funding for small grants was launched in February, and more than £15 million worth has been granted to farmers who applied to buy new kit.
This will include equipment specific to cattle, sheep and pig farmers, as well as precision farming and resource management equipment for arable farmers.
The next application window will open in early 2019, with over £30 million available for future funding rounds for farmers.
Defra Secretary Michael Gove made the announcement ahead of the Government’s Agri-Tech Investment roundtable in London on Thursday (11 October).
Hosted by the Department for International Trade and attended by Defra, it'll also include investors such as Bayer Crop Sciences, Elanco, Marine Harvest and Zoetis.
Mr Gove said harnessing technology enables farmers to become even more productive and environmentally efficient.
“The UK is a world-leader for talent in agriculture and technology, so there are real opportunities for our burgeoning agri-tech sector.
“We are already seeing the rewards of investing in agri-tech, with around £15 million of new funding announced today for farmers to purchase hi-tech equipment.”
He added: “We know that by embracing technology – such as fruit ripeness spectrometers or calving detectors – farm businesses can become more efficient, productive and resilient.”
Following industry feedback, new items have also been added to the list of equipment eligible for funding in the second round, including fruit ripeness spectrometers and nitrogen-measuring devices for calculating fertiliser application for crops.
Further details will be published in early 2019 when the next round of funding opens for applications..