Following on from our previous blog, the dairy farmers’ Covid-19 fund is opening for applications on the 18th June. The Government announced the fund on 6th May to support dairy farmers impacted by Covid-19 in recognition that dairy farmers have fixed costs of production which they may have not been able to meet during the coronavirus lockdown period.
Farmers who have experienced losses of more than 25% of their income during April and May due to a reduction in demand for dairy products from the closure of bars, restaurants and cafes etc., will be eligible for the fund. They will be able to apply directly to the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) for a single payment of up to £10,000 financial support to cover up to 70% of lost income during that period, with no cap on the number of farmers who can apply. The successful applicants will start to receive payments from 6th July with the aim of helping farmers to maintain their production capacities without impacting animal welfare.
Hibberts’ agricultural team understand that the eligibility criteria will require dairy farmers to evidence a reduction of 25% or more in the average price paid for their milk in April 2020 compared with the average price received in February 2020. This would be used in conjunction with the additional criteria of covering up to 70% of lost income to determine the value of the payment.
We expect the fund to receive a significant amount of applications and now is the perfect time to review the financial impact of Covid-19 on your dairy farm and collate any paperwork to determine whether you will be eligible to apply.
We can offer farmers and agricultural businesses advice and support during this difficult time – please contact our Agricultural Law team.