£3m Farm Family Key Skills training scheme opens

Northern Ireland farmers will be offered short courses in subjects such as business planning and animal health under a £3m Farm Family Key Skills (FFKS) training programme.

The FFKS is the next stage of the Farm Business Improvement Scheme (FBIS), which is being delivered under the 2014-2020 Rural Development Programme.

It aims to provide training for farmers who may not be able to commit the time required to join a Business Development Group.

See also: Northern Ireland to pay farmers to take part in benchmarking group

Agriculture minister Michelle O’Neill said the scheme would offer a range of training courses in areas such as business planning, health and safety and new technologies.

“The aim is to equip farmers with key skills that will improve decision-making and farm business management to help them meet the challenges that the industry is currently facing. I encourage farmers to apply for the courses that are most appropriate to their business needs,” she said.

The first training event, on animal health for pig farmers, will take place next month.

More information about the sessions will be available in the local press and on the College of Agriculture, Food and the Rural Environment (Cafre) website.

Farmers and people employed in farming will be able to register online through the Cafre website or alternatively they can ring the Knowledge Transfer Team on 028 9442 6790 who will then take their details.