The UK government has increased the money for slurry infrastructure for farmers to £34 million through the first round of the Slurry Infrastructure Grant.

This increase, announced today (Tuesday, April 4), is more than two and a half times the original budget.

The government said farmers will benefit from the additional funding as it will help them better manage slurry storage and to store and use water more efficiently, which is a part of a new Plan for Water published by the government today.

“Better management of slurry from farming means less pollution washing off into our rivers when it rains,” it said.

“More investment into water supply will mean farmers are more prepared for climate change impacts – from reservoirs to better irrigation.”

The government is also set to publish the guidance for the second round of the Water Management Grant, which will open for applications later in April and provide £10 million in funding in a bid to help farmers manage their water use through better irrigation and more on-farm reservoirs.

Farming Minister Mark Spencer said: “Communities across the country want to see clean and plentiful water in our rivers and streams, and farmers have a huge role in helping to deliver this.

“We know that farmers want to do the right thing, which is why – as part of today’s Plan for Water – we’re providing even more funding for farmers both to reduce their water pollution from slurry and better manage the water on their farms.”  

Slurry storage   

According to the goverment, investing in good slurry management is an important step that farmers can take to protect the environment.

The Slurry Infrastructure Grant will provide farmers with between £25,000-250,000 to build, replace or expand storage and can contribute towards lagoons, steel and concrete ring tanks and large slurry bags.

More than 1,200 applications were received for the first round of the grant.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said it wants to help as many farms as possible to upgrade their slurry storage, but needs to balance the high demand for grants with the capacity of slurry store suppliers to increase production.   

374 projects have been invited to submit a full application for a share of £33.9 million in funding – up from £13.2 million when the grant was first announced last year.