Welcome to

Welcome to FarmWell Wales, a one stop resource to help you and your farm business stay strong and resilient

FarmWell Wales is an initiative launched by the Wales Farm Support Group in 2020.

The Wales Farm Support Group includes:

The DPJ Foundation

FCN Cymru

Addington Fund

Updates available from GWLAD

Keep your farm or forestry business up to date with news, grants and policies.

You can sign up to receive Gwlad by email.

Latest Updates

RABI Back to School Grants 2024

Applications will open on 8 July 2024 at 9.00am. Further details can be found here

Welsh Government Agriculture Summer Update 2024

Rural Affairs Secretary chairs first SFS Roundtable

The Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs, Huw Irranca-Davies chaired the inaugural meeting of the Sustainable Farming Scheme Roundtable.

Cabinet Secretary ‘out in the field’ to learn about sustainable land management

Climate Change and Rural Affairs Secretary Huw Irranca-Davies has been ‘out in the field’ learning about a world-leading Welsh Government programme responsible for evidence which support policies relating to sustainable food production, mitigating climate change and halt the decline in biodiversity.

Farming industry feedback shapes new changes to TB testing

Huw Irranca-Davies, the Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs, has made further changes to TB testing in Wales after meeting with and listening to farmers across Wales.

Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD)

Starting 1 July, 2024, the new industry-led Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD) legislation developed in partnership with Welsh Government will require all cattle keepers to:

  • screen their herds for BVD annually,
  • isolate all Persistently Infected (PI) animals from the rest of the herd for their entire lifespan.

Keepers have until 1 July, 2025, to complete their first annual herd test, otherwise, herds that have not completed their screening test will be placed under movement restrictions pending a negative result.

The Future of Farming in Wales: Written Statement from the Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs

The Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs recently issued a statement on his upcoming priorities for agriculture. This includes a different timetable for implementing the Sustainable Farming Scheme based on feedback from the consultation and meeting farmers since coming into post.

On-farm infrastructure investment support 2024 – Nutrient Management Investment Scheme and Small Grants – Yard Coverings Scheme

£20m has been committed to contribute to improvements in water and air quality and support farmers to reach compliance with The Water Resources (Control of Agricultural Pollution) (Wales) Regulations 2021. The Nutrient Management Investment Scheme EOI window has opened on 15 July 2024.

Mandatory use of CCTV in all slaughterhouses approved

New Regulations have been approved by the Senedd for the mandatory use of CCTV in all slaughterhouses in Wales.

Written Statement: Bovine TB Technical Advisory Group Review of Existing On-Farm Slaughter of TB Reactors Policy

The Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change and Rural Affairs, Huw Irranca-Davies has accepted the Group’s recommendations in full.

Poultry and Other Captive Birds Compulsory Registration

From the 1 October 2024 it will become a legal requirement for bird keepers in Wales and England to register for a County Parish Holding (CPH) number and register as a bird/poultry keeper on the GB Poultry Register. This is with the exception of birds that are kept as pets and live solely indoors without any outside access.

Bluetongue virus risk set out for the year ahead

Following the bluetongue outbreak in England last year, the latest risk assessment of bluetongue virus entering Great Britain during 2024 has been published by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA). In this updated qualitative risk assessment, APHA confirm there is a very high probability of a new introduction of bluetongue virus serotype 3 (BTV-3) into livestock in Great Britain through infected biting midges being blown over from northern Europe.  

Protect your herd against Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD)

To prepare for BVD legislation coming into force this summer, it is recommended that you screen your herd and consult with your veterinarian to ensure you’re keeping BVD out. If you find an antigen-positive animal, it is recommended you remove it from your herd as soon as possible. The benefits of being BVD-free include increased productivity, fertility and reduced carbon footprint. Maintaining a BVD-free status improves herd health by reducing antibiotic usage and promoting better calf health.

Forestry and Timber Knowledge Transfer and networking event

Join Forest Research, NRW, Confor, Woodknowledge Wales and Welsh Government on 13 June 2024, from 9:30 to 16:15 at Neuadd Reichel, Bangor University, LL57 2TR (and online).

Transition milk trial targets calf health at Pembrokeshire dairy farm

A Pembrokeshire spring-calving dairy farm is introducing a new feeding system for newborn calves in what is to be thought the first trial of its kind in a large-scale herd.

Farming Connect Animal Health and Welfare Workshops help family farm shape a business ‘fit for the future’

An eagerness to learn new skills and knowledge is helping mother and son Dianna and Iestyn Spary to continually improve their livestock farming enterprise and build a financially sustainable business fit for the future.

When the Inspector Calls

Farm scheme inspections: guide for farmers 2024 edition. Advice to help you follow the law and prepare for cross compliance and Glastir inspections.

Agricultural Minimum Wage Changes from 1 April 2024

The Agricultural Wages (Wales) Order 2024 replaces the 2023 Order which means that as from 1 April 2024:

  • there will be increased minimum pay rates for all grades of worker. 
  • all allowances (which include dog allowances) will be increased by 8.5%.

the overtime rate is now payable at 1.5 times the agricultural worker’s actual hourly rate, rather than the applicable agricultural minimum wage hourly rate

Written Statement: Bovine TB Technical Advisory Group Membership

The Bovine TB Technical Advisory Group (TAG) had its first meeting on Wednesday 17 April 2024.

Bovine Viral Diarrhoea

BVD is a viral disease affecting cattle, which can lead to abortion, infertility, deformed calves, and compromised herd health, particularly among young stock. Herds infected with BVD often experience increased cases of calf pneumonia. Given the potential economic impact, cattle owners are recommended to test their herds for BVD annually. Testing improves herd health and profitability by allowing swift identification of infected animals, disease control and informed and safer cattle trading.

Upland dairy farm trialling herbal ley mixes established with direct drilling

A Welsh upland dairy farming business is aiming to accelerate its move away from a reliance on nitrogen fertiliser for growing grass by growing herbal ley mixes.

Spring update from Welsh Government

Key dates in 2024, grants and further information

SAF Digital Assistance

The Regional Offices are open to the public strictly by appointment only. If you need additional support, particularly if you are completing the SAF for the first time the Customer Contact Centre can provide telephone support. The Customer Contact Centre can also make a ‘Digital Assistance’ appointment, if necessary, for you to attend a Regional Office where a member of staff can guide you through the process.

BPS 2024 Payments

This year, an Advance payment, worth 70% of the estimated BPS 2024 claim value, will be made from 14 October 2024, subject to claim eligibility and receipt of all necessary supporting documents. Balance payments will be made from 12 December 2024.

Transfer of BPS 2024 Entitlements

The 2024 transfer window of BPS entitlements is open, with Transfer of Entitlements forms available on the RPW Online account.

Organic Support

On 17 January 2024, the Minister announced support payments to fully-certified organic farmers in 2024. Full guidance will be published within the Single Application Form (SAF) 2024 rules booklet.

Enhanced Nutrient Management Document

Helping farmers and land managers meet the needs of the Enhanced Nutrient Management approach.

Annual Inventory for sheep and goat keepers

All keepers of sheep and goats are required to complete an inventory once a year.

Single Application Form (SAF) 2024

Single Application Form (SAF) 2024 will be available from 4 March 2024. The deadline for submitting your SAF is midnight 15 May 2024, or by 10 June 2024 with late penalties. A SAF cannot be submitted or accepted after 10 June 2024.

Do you have a temporary County Parish Holding (tCPH)?

tCPH’s are CPH’s that are used for temporary occupation of land that does not belong to you and used for less than 364 days per year. You must consider the length of your agreement when setting up your tCPH.  Your tCPH will only be valid for the duration that you record on your application.  

Woodland Schemes – application windows

In 2024, there is a new approach to the Woodland Creation Grant. There will only be one window open from 4 March 2024 until 22 November 2024, or until the budget has been allocated. The Small Grant – Woodland Creation scheme will continue to have several windows throughout the year:

  • three in 2024, and one planned in 2025 if budget is agreed for 2025/26 financial year

Changes to felling licences under the Forestry Act

Natural Resources Wales will be holding guidance sessions on the changes to felling licences under the Forestry Act which will come into effect from 1 April. No further information is available at the moment.

Vets and farmers working together on animal health pilot scheme

A pilot project has been launched to assess how closer working between farmers and vets can improve animal health and farm productivity. It will test the Animal Health Improvement Cycle (AHIC). This is a key proposed element of the Sustainable Farming Scheme.

Cross Compliance 2024 

The vast majority of Cross Compliance rules continue to apply as in 2023. However, some factsheets have been updated for 2024. They reflect changes in requirements, good practice and to clarify wording. There have also been some changes to the Cross Compliance 2024 Verifiable Standards for:

  • classifying breaches of Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAEC) and
  • Statutory Management Requirements (SMR)

These changes include SMR 1 – Water Protection, updated to reflect requirements applying to all land from 1 January 2024 under the Water Resources (Control of Agricultural Pollution) (Wales) Regulations 2021.

Parallel trade permits and treated seed

The Plant Protection Products (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2023, which applies across Great Britain, comes into force on the 31 December. It temporarily extends or temporarily reinstates transitional provisions put in place through EU Exit legislation in relation to pesticide seed treatments and parallel trade products.

Plant Health: contact form

Please complete the contact form if you would like to be added to the plant health mailing list. Send completed forms to plant.health@gov.wales. You will receive updates and information about future consultations, workshops and events.

Coetiroedd Bach: Tiny Forests in Wales

Are you a farmer interested in community tree planting to help mitigate the impacts of climate change? The Coetiroedd Bach scheme is supporting some farms with grants between £10k and £40k. They will create densely packed, small areas of fast-growing native woodland accessible to all. The scheme is being delivered in conjunction with The National Lottery Heritage Fund. The next round will open in February 2024.

Could you be a future member of the Independent Appeals Panel?

A recruitment exercise for new Panel Members will begin early in 2024. Independent Panel Members are appointed by the Welsh Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd. They consider appeals relating to a wide range of Rural Grants and Payments. If you are interested in applying or would like to find out more, please e-mail IndependentAppealsSecretariat@gov.wales.

Introduction of Pre-Movement Testing into the Low TB Area (LTBA) and of Post-Movement Testing into the Intermediate TB Areas (ITBAs) of Wales

Following consultation on a refreshed approach to TB Eradication in Wales and the subsequent delivery plan, published in March 2023, changes are being made to the Tuberculosis (Wales) Order. They will allow for a number of measures to be introduced which were supported in the consultation. More information will be available on GOV.WALES in the new year.

Confidence to change management through grass measuring reduces input costs by £20,000 for Welsh Dairy farmer

Grass measuring and budgeting has given a Welsh dairy farmer the confidence to change his fertiliser policy, reducing input costs by £20,000 a year.

Livestock farmer trials peas and beans as soya alternative in ewe rations

Protein-rich peas and beans are replacing concentrates in the winter ration of sheep and cattle at a Radnorshire farm.

Farm Liaison Service

The Welsh Government Farm Liaison Service provides advice about policies and grants, including:

  • Basic Payment Scheme (BPS)
  • Rural Payments Wales (RPW) Online
  • cross compliance
  • animal health and welfare
  • record-keeping
  • Glastir
  • Rural Development Programme
  • scheme rules

Innovative ideas to tackle ammonia emission in Wales

The Welsh Government is making £1 million available to support new projects which can help reduce ammonia emissions.

Winter Update 2023

The Winter Update has now been published online. It contains information, important dates and rule changes from a variety of key areas relating to rural affairs.

Bovine TB long term trends show progress, with targeted action in key areas

Bovine TB cases in Wales continue to decline overall, with a targeted approach taken in hot-spot areas and specific projects taking place in Pembrokeshire and Anglesey.

‘Working in Wales’ – land-based workers in the spotlight at Farming Connect conference

Facilitate and promote the importance of continuing professional development (CPD) now in order to modernise and professionalise our land-based industries and prepare them for the economic and environmental demands of the future!’

Home-mix ration offers cheaper alternative to concentrates at Welsh livestock farm

A home mix ration formulated with high quality ingredients and incorporating homegrown forage has provided a cheaper alternative to bought-in concentrates for pregnant ewes and beef cattle on a Powys upland farm.

Rural Schemes: new application dates added

Caring for farm animals and horses in extreme winter weather

Extreme winter weather can pose a major threat to livestock. If you keep livestock you should inspect them often. It is important they have access to shelter, feed and water.

New Rural Wales Facebook page launched by Welsh Government


Alzheimer’s Society

For over 40 years, Alzheimer’s Society has been working to speed up accurate diagnosis of the disease, provide support for those managing it, and to fund research and new treatments to create hope for the future.

Dementia is not just about losing your memory.

It can also affect perceptions, logic, reasoning and visual perception.  Farms are inherently dangerous places, with large animals, slurry pits, machinery and firearms all possible reasons for concern to a farming family when a loved one begins to develop dementia.

You can also email: enquiries@alzheimers.org.uk

New Resources form Samaritans Cymru

Toolkits for those looking for guidance on how to understand and talk compassionately with those suffering poor mental health and emotional distress are available from Samaritans Cymru. Please click here for more details about these, and other support resources available in Wales.

Diversification – Advice on setting up a campsite or caravan park on your farm

Pitchup can advise on everything you need to know, from information on planning permission, to taking payments, to waste disposal, to how such a venture might affect your BPS entitlements.

Other News

Working at height: What you need to consider from NFU Cymru

Image captured by Ruth Rees Photography

THE GREAT GRAZING GUIDE from The Prince’s Countryside Fund

BASIC PAYMENT SCHEME announced for 23/24

NFU Cymru: The Welsh Farm Safety Partnership are using the next quarter to highlight the risks associated with using machinery on farm. Find out more here.

Farming Connect has established a new mentoring scheme for farmers and foresters who will be able to receive guidance and advice from their peers on a wide range of topics.

Eligible mentees can access 15 hours of fully funded mentoring services with their chosen farming or forestry mentor. Find out more.

Visit Farming Connect to find out what’s going on over the next couple of months in their regularly updated calendar

More Updates

  • Welsh farmers will need to manage habitats across 10% of farm. Click here.
  • Non-intensive ‘Welsh Way’ of farming could offer solutions to climate and food security challenges. Click here.
  • RWAS Smallholding and Countryside Festival updates. Click here.
  • Apply for funding for a Farming Connect Training course. Click here.
  • FREE Mental Health Awareness training from the DPJ Foundation. Click here.

Keeping your business resilient through change

Links to the most useful and user-friendly information sources across all farm business areas, where you can find the facts to help plan successfully and efficiently.

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Farming Business Help
Farming Business Help

Staying fit and healthy

Supportive links, advice and help, aimed at achieving stronger emotional and physical intelligence, whilst maintaining a safe and healthy working environment.

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I need to talk to someone

Guidance on how you can access additional support and mentoring, both from a business and personal perspective, should the need arise.

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Farming Business Help