Wales' farmers will now have an extra three weeks to complete applications for the latest round of the Farm Business Grant programme.

Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths announced the fifth window for applications to the grant will be extended and will now close on October 26.

Originally, applications for the scheme, which aims to improve the economic and environmental performance of agricultural holdings, had been due to close on Friday, October 5.

The Farm Business Grant helps farmers make their business more efficient, resilient and environmentally friendly by providing a contribution towards capital investments in items of equipment and machinery.

The scheme, which is administered through Rural Payments Wales, is an important element of the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-20.

Farmers were required to have attended a Farming for the Future event to apply. Further information on the grant and how to apply is available on the Farm Business Grant page on the Welsh Government’s website.

A last chance?

The Cabinet Secretary said: “Given the lack of certainty on future funding from the UK Government, this may be the last window of the Farm Business Grant. I have therefore decided to extend the deadline to October 26 to allow farmers more time to apply for this crucial investment.

“The Farm Business Grant allows farmers to make important investments in their businesses to support efficiencies, improve productivity and increase their resilience.

The prolonged period of dry weather over the summer posed pressures and additional costs on farmers so this grant is particularly timely.

“I urge all eligible farmers who have attended a Farming for the Future event to consider making an application in this extended window.”