The bulk of single farm payments should be in farmers’ bank accounts by the end of March 2008, according to the government.
Junior DEFRA minister Lord Rooker has set the Rural Payments Agency a target of paying 75% by value of valid 2007 single payment scheme claims by 31 March 2008 and 90% by value of by 31 May.
But he has said that this target is based on the assumption that no partial payments will be made – an issue that ministers will look at again in autumn 2007.
Lord Rooker said the RPA must also demonstrate a continually improving trend in customer satisfaction measured through quarterly customer surveys and by a reduction in customer complaints.
Farm leaders had been pushing for the bulk of payments to come in December 2007.
For more on SFPs see FWi’s special report on the Single Payment Scheme.