Northern Ireland’s Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister, Andrew Muir, has today (Friday, March 1) opened the “substantial” Single Application and Map Service funding package worth £267 million.

The Entitlements Transfer Service also opens today.

The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) said funding is available to farm businesses for Direct Payments this year and that these payments represent the main source of income for many local farmers.

Muir said he was “delighted” to announce that the 2024 Single Applications and Maps Service and the Entitlements Transfer Service are now open.

“This is a substantial funding package worth £267 million,” he said.

“The payments help ensure the resilience of farm businesses and represents our commitment to farming families and the rural economy right across Northern Ireland.

“I would urge all farmers to apply early in order to avoid any penalties.”

2024 Single Applications

Applications to the 2024 Single Application and Maps Service, and Entitlements Transfer Service can be made via DAERA’s online services from today.

Single Applications must be submitted by Wednesday, May 15, 2024, to avoid late claim penalties.

The last date to submit Single Applications is Monday, June 10, 2024. Entitlement Transfer applications must be submitted by Thursday, May 2, 2024.

The Single Application is the method for claiming any of the following schemes:

  • Basic Payment Scheme (BPS);
  • Young Farmers’ Payment (YFP);
  • Regional Reserve Entitlement allocation or top up (as a Young Farmer or New Entrant);
  • Environmental Farming Scheme (EFS);
  • Farm Woodland Premium Scheme (FWPS);
  • Farm Woodland Scheme (FWS);
  • Forest Expansion Scheme (Annual Premia);
  • Small Woodland Grant Scheme (SWGS); or
  • Protein Crop Scheme.

Farmers should also use the Single Application and Map Service to notify the DAERA of any changes to their land in 2024. This should be done as early as possible to avoid delays in payment, the department said.