2021 BPS opens for applications

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has confirmed that the application process for the 2021 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) and the Greening Scheme has now opened.

The department made the confirmation this morning (Thursday, February 18).

The department said that, over the coming days, farmers will be receiving a BPS information pack in the post containing maps and land details.

The pack will also include a ‘help sheet’ to assist farmers in making their online application.

However, as EU regulations have required all applications to be carried out online since 2018, the pack will not include a paper application form.

The closing date for BPS applications is Monday, May 17.

The department is urging farmers and farm advisors to avail of the early opening of the application process now, rather than waiting until nearer the closing date.

The department also confirmed that there will be a reduction in payments of 2.05% “in order to respect the national direct payments ceiling on foot of the agreement reached on the EU Budget in late 2020”.

Farmers will be notified in the coming week of the value of their payment entitlements.

The application processes for all direct payment elements (including BPS; Greening; the Young Farmers Scheme; the National Reserve, transferring of entitlements; and the Areas of Natural Constraints scheme) are now online.

According to the department, this helps to ensure that all applications under these schemes can be processed as “efficiently as possible”.