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News

Manure Efficiency Technology Scheme

14th April 2014

Agriculture Minister O’Neill has announced that the Manure Efficiency Technology Scheme (METS) will re-open on Monday 31 March 2014.

 

METS, a capital grant scheme delivered under the Rural Development Programme 2007-2013, provides financial support for specialised slurry spreading equipment.

Minister O’Neill said: “The first two tranches of the METS have successfully funded over 230 advanced slurry spreading machines.  The productive and environmental benefits of this equipment have been verified by local research at AFBI Hillsborough and demonstrated to farmers through a series of events organised by CAFRE.  The third tranche of METS will help more farmers to invest in this technology which supports efficient and environmentally sustainable farming practice by promoting greater nutrient efficiency.

 

“METS equipment increases resource efficiency and can help reduce the environmental impact of livestock production.  Therefore, it is an important support for the “Going for Growth” Strategy.”

 

Outlining the application process, the Minister continued: “The Scheme will again be open to both individual and collective applicants.  Therefore,  farmers will have an opportunity to come together to submit a collective application under a lead applicant.  The collective facilities proved popular under Tranche 2, helping smaller farms benefit from the Scheme and the technology.

 

“The Scheme will continue to operate under the same selection criteria as Tranche 2 which reflect the primary objective of maximising the environmental and productive benefits from the equipment funded under METS.

 

“At the end of the application period, applications will be scored and those awarded the highest marks will receive offers of funding from the £0.7 million available.”

 

She added “I was encouraged to see such a high uptake of the on-line application facilities under Tranche 2 of METS.  Therefore, we will again be awarding additional marks for on-line applications under Tranche 3.  Paper applications will continue to be accepted, by hand or by post.

 

“The eligible items under Tranche 3 have been extended to include trailing shoe and trailing hose spreading equipment for fitting to existing umbilical systems.

 

In conclusion the Minister said: “CAFRE will be holding METS information workshops in the week following the opening of the Scheme.  These will help farmers assess whether investment in equipment funded under METS is appropriate for their farm business.  I would encourage as many farmers as possible to come along.

 

“Farmers who are funded under METS will also receive CAFRE training on Nutrient Management and safe handling of slurry.  Therefore, the scheme aims to provide farmers with a complete package to help them make the best use of the equipment.

 

The closing date for receipt of METS Tranche 3 applications is Friday 25 April 2014 at 4.00pm.

Online application will be available during this period via the EU Grants database www.eugrants.org

 

The Explanatory Booklet, Application Form and details of the METS Information Workshops will be available on line from the Delivery Agent, Countryside Agri-Rural Partnership Limited, from Monday 31 March 2014 at: http://www.countrysiderural.co.uk. These documents can also be accessed on: http://www.dardni.gov.uk/index/grants-and-funding.

Hard copies of these documents are also available on request from the Delivery Agent. Contact: Countryside Agri-Rural Partnership, Manure Efficiency Technology Scheme, 97 Moy Road, Dungannon, Co Tyrone, BT71 7DX. Telephone Number: 08450 267 535. Fax Number: 028 8778 8200. Email: mets@countrysiderural.co.uk.



 

Notes to editors:

 

1.The Manure Efficiency Technology Scheme is a Capital Grant Scheme delivered under the NI Rural Development Programme 2007-2013 measure 1.3 Modernisation of Agricultural holdings.

2. The scheme will provide financial support to farm businesses of up to 40% of the cost of eligible items purchased.  Eligible items for grant aid are (i) slurry tankers fitted with trailing shoe, trailing hose or shallow injector slurry spreading systems, (ii) trailing shoe, trailing hose or injector systems for fitting to an umbilical system or an existing tanker designed for the fitting of an advanced spreading system.

3. The grant available to each successful individual or collective application will be up to a maximum of £10,000.The total funding available for Tranche 3 is £0.7million.

 

4. Applications will be assessed under the selection criteria:

Environmental Benefit and Cost Effectiveness: 65 marks,
Farms operating under the Nitrates Directive Derogation: 15 marks,
Succession Opportunity (age under 40), 15 marks; and
E-Communication: 5 marks.

5. Tranche 3 will close for applications at 4.00pm Friday 25 April 2014.

 

6. CAFRE Information Workshops on The Manure Efficiency Technology Scheme Tranche 3 are scheduled for Tuesday 8th April at Greenmount College Antrim starting at 8pm and on Thursday 10th April, 2014 at Loughry College Cookstown starting at 8pm.

 

7. All media queries should be directed to the DARD Press Office on 028 9052 4619. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07699 715 440.