GLAS – what Tier farmer are you?
The GLAS agri-environmental scheme has a deadline of May 15 for farmers interested in applying, but the first hurdle is to determine what ‘Tier’ you would be under the scheme.
Under the scheme, priority is given to different ‘tier’ farmers. Here’s how to quickly determine what tier you can qualify under.
Under the rules of the scheme, Tier 1 farms will get priority access to GLAS. To determine if you are a Tier 1 farmer you need to have one of the following criteria:
Priority Environmental Assets:
- Natura Sites (privately owned SAC or SPA)
- Commonages >10ha
- High Status Water Area (bovines only)
- Farmland BirdsRare breeds (registered in 2012/2013)
Next in line will be intensive farmers (dairy, beef, sheep farms) who can also qualify for priority access if they have a whole farm stocking rate of over 140kg N/ha, or tillage farmers can qualify if they have more than 30ha of arable crops.
They will qualify for priority if they choose one of the following options:
- Low emission slurry spreading or
- Wild bird cover (1ha)
(Tillage farmers with over 30ha of arable crops can choose:)
- Minimum tillage (10ha) or
- Catch crops (10ha)
Finally, registered organic farm are also eligible under Tier 1 entry.
If there is still availability in the scheme, after the above demand has been met, then Tier 2 farmers will be given access.
You are considered a Tier 2 farmer if you:
Do not have Priority Environmental Assets but do have land with a Vulnerable Water Area; or,
In the absence of a Vulnerable Water Area, an applicant may still qualify for Tier 2 access provided one of the following actions are chosen and planned for:
- Minimum Tillage (arable farm < 30 ha )
- Catch Crops Establishment from a Sown Crop (arable farm < 30 ha)
- Low Emission Slurry Spreading (livestock farm < 140kg N/ha)
- Wild Bird Cover (grassland farm < 140 kg N/ha )
(It is not guaranteed that all eligible applicants in Tier 2 will get into the Scheme and a scoring matrix will apply if necessary.)
Finally, the third priority farmer will be those who do not meet the above criteria. However, it is possible for such Tier 3 farmers to make themselves Tier 2 by adopting the actions above to fulfill the Tier 1 or Tier 2 criteria.