The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has announced that £14.7million has been paid to date to 8,119 applicants under the 2017 Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme.
The ANC scheme is part of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020. It provides a payment on eligible hectares of forage land in the Severely Disadvantaged Area (including SDA common area), to compensate for all or part of the additional costs and income forgone related purely to the constraints for agricultural production in the area.
The scheme pays £20million to approximately 8,800 farm businesses. Payment rates for the scheme are £56.47 per hectare up to 200 hectares, and a reduced rate of £42.35 per hectare thereafter.
The ANC Scheme has been extended for one more year. Claims for ANC 2018 must be submitted on the 2017 Single Application before the closing date of 15 May 2017. This final year of the scheme has a budget of £8million.