Monthly ‘must do’s’: April 2012

1) Apply for a Rural Economy Grant (REG)

Producers have until 30 April to apply for a Rural Economy Grant. REG Animal Health and Welfare funding is aimed at providing facilities/technologies that are designed over and above standard industry practices.

The funding is focused on large-scale projects shown to be part of a holistic farm plan to raise AHW and be dependent on grant funding to implement best practice.

  • Grant support is up to a maximum of 40% of eligible costs with a few exceptions (visit to find out more)

  • To apply there must be a minimum grant requirement of £25,000, this equates to minimum eligible expenditure of £62,500 where the 40% rate applies (or £125,000 where 20% applies)

2) Pig movement licence change

To be legal, all pig movements must be reported through the electronic pig movement system, eAML2, from 1 April 2012, comments Dorothea Schiemann from BPEX.

“It is compulsory for all pig keepers in England and Wales – they can set up movements either by going online or by contacting the eAML2 Bureau Service.”

To register for eAML2 visit and click on “Producer registration” or call the eAML2 bureau service on 0844 335 8400 or fax 02476 692 405.

3) Dairy budgets

Is April your financial year end? Don’t forget to do a budget and cash flow for the new financial year, says Rachael Chamberlayne, DairyCo extension officer.

“These aren’t just for the bank – they should be integral to the management of the business throughout the year. Now is also the time to contact your regional officer to arrange a time to get together and complete your year-end Milkbench+ data collection.”

4) Marketing breeding sheep

Pedigree sheep breeders should make the most of new technologies to improve their marketing and develop relationships with their customers, says EBLEX’s Samuel Boon.

“Given the increased level of interest in EBVs, tools such as smartphones, email and the internet shouldn’t be overlooked when planning marketing activity.”

 A new guide, Marketing Breeding Sheep for Better Returns, is available by contacting the EBLEX Better Returns Programme on 0870 241 8829 or by emailing MMD

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