Farming and Forestry Improvement Scheme (FFIS)

The FFIS is part of the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) and is a scheme of support, developed to help farming, forestry and horticultural businesses in England to become more efficient at using resources. This scheme aims to help make your business more profitable and resilient whilst reducing the impact of farming on the environment.

This round of FFIS is now closed for new applications except from farmers in areas affected from flooding.

We received over 2700 applications under Round 3 of FFIS requesting over £26m of grant. As we set out in the Applicant Handbook we are prioritising the available funding to those farmers that have not had FFIS under previous rounds and who have submitted a complete application. We are currently assessing all applications received to enable us to prioritise on this basis. We apologise for the delay this may cause in getting a decision to you but we received an unprecedented number of applications for this round of FFIS against the available budget.

Revisions to FFIS for those farmers affected by flooding

We will continue to accept applications from farmers affected by flooding until 4 May 2014. Applications received after this date will not be processed. Grant is paid in arrears so successful applicants will need to purchase and install the items before claiming grant from us. However it is important to note that all grant claims will need to be received by the RDPE Delivery team by the 31 January 2015. Therefore please only apply for FFIS funding if you are certain that you will be able to purchase and install your FFIS approved items in time to submit your claim by that date.

As a result of the recent flooding we concluded that there are several ways that FFIS Round 3 can offer support for flood victims. The focus for Round 3 must however remain on improving the longer term competitiveness of the business with the Farming Recovery Fund above, addressing immediate and shorter term needs to get the farm and the business back on its feet.

The changes are summarised as:

  • funding additional items specifically for those in flood affected areas to help the business become more resilient to future flooding occurrences
  • increases in grant rates
  • changing scheme processes to prioritise applications from those affected by flooding
  • extending the deadline date for applications from flood affected areas.

For further details including how to apply in you are in an area affected by flooding, please read the guidance:

You will also need to carefully read the FFIS R3 applicant handbook as the majority of the form is the same and will need to be completed in the same way. The requirements for supporting documents, such as accounts, quotes, energy bills and plans remain the same.

Please note that under no circumstances will we accept applications submitted on Round 1 or Round 2 application forms. We will also not accept applications from farmers affected by flooding on normal FFIS Round 3 application forms.

For an application to be processed we must receive a fully completed, signed hard copy of the application, an electronic copy (sent to FFIS3@defra.gsi.gov.uk) and all supporting documentation by 4 May 2014. Under no circumstances will we accept hand delivered applications and as FFIS applications are now being processed by a central team they must be sent to the following postal address:

FFIS Round 3
PO Box 10383
NOTTINGHAM
NG2 9PT

Supporting documentation includes quotes, a declaration form signed by one of the owners of the business, copies of 2 years of full trading accounts, and relevant thematic documentation such as animal health and welfare plan summary, energy bills or water bills. Full details of the documentation required are in the Applicant Handbook so please read it carefully.

For any queries that cannot be answered by the Applicant Handbook, then you can contact the Defra FFIS team at FFIS3@defra.gsi.gov.uk or please contact the FFIS Helpline on: 0300 060 4761.
 

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