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Farmers and land managers to benefit from payment rate increases for woodland

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Forestry Commission have announced a significant uplift in England Woodland Creation Offer (EWCO) payments.

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The uplift is intended to promote an increase in tree-planting across the country. It takes effect immediately and offers more tailored tree-planting incentives to farmers and land managers, while also protecting food production farmland.

Currently the maximum rate per hectare available from additional contributions is £8,000. This will increase to £11,600 – a 45% increase.

Further new measures include a new Low Sensitivity Land Payment of £1,100 per hectare. This can be stacked onto the above payment if applicable to give a total of £12,700 per hectare.

To encourage planting or the natural colonisation of highly biodiverse woodlands next to ancient woodland, a new ‘Nature Recovery – Premium’ option of £3,300 per hectare is being added to the Nature Recovery Additional Contribution.

Other additional contributions, such as those relating to riparian buffers and flood mitigation and access, have also seen uplifts. As has the annual maintenance payments, which have been increased to £400 per hectare, per year, for 15 years.

As expert accountants for the farming and land management industry, please feel free to talk to us at any time for advice that could help your business be more profitable.

Details of the new rates can be found here:   https://www.gov.uk/government/news/payment-rates-increased-to-benefit-farmers-land-managers-trees

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