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BPS 2020

Everything rural businesses need to know about the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in 2020

The Basic Payment Scheme (BPS), including greening and the young farmer payment, will continue for 2020 with available funding the same as for 2019.

BPS will continue to be run by the Rural Payments Agency (RPA).

We will confirm the entitlement values and greening rates in the autumn.

To get payments, you’ll need to follow the same standards as you do now. This includes on-site inspections of UK farms. The current framework of rules and processes will stay the same until Defra introduces new agriculture policies and schemes.

Latest news

Rural Payments service

You can now view information from a date in the past. From 6 April, in the View Land screens, you can choose to see your land parcel map and information for a date in the past as far back as 01/01/2015. For more information click the Help link in the Land summary screen.

Crop diversification rules relaxed for BPS 2020

With large areas of farmland in England affected by the extreme wet weather in the autumn of 2019 and the winter of 2019 to 2020, the government is progressing plans to remove the crop diversification rules for all farmers for 2020 (‘the two or three crop rule’).

This means that if you are unable to plant the required combination of arable crops, you will not be penalised. The legislation to effect this will be made for Parliament’s approval as soon as possible.

You must still complete your BPS application, either online using the Rural Payments service or on paper using the BPS application form (BP5). You must still declare all of your arable land using the appropriate crop codes.

When the applications are processed, and Parliament has agreed the changes, we will not apply the crop diversification rules to determine eligibility for the BPS greening payment. However, you will still need to meet the rest of the greening rules:

  • maintaining at least 5% equivalent area of ecological focus area if you have more than 15 ha of arable land
  • following the rules for the management of permanent grassland.

Crop diversification rules

To qualify for the BPS greening payments, farmers with 10ha or more of arable land, would usually have to grow at least 2 arable crops. Farmers with more than 30 hectares of arable land, would have to grow at least three different crops on that land.

Read more information about what the relaxation of the 3 crop rule means for farmers.

BPS applications are open

Apply for BPS between 12 March and midnight on 15 May (without penalty), or by midnight on 9 June (late application penalties apply).

There are updates for 2020 which may affect you. Read the Basic Payment Scheme: rules for 2020, in particular page 1 which gives an overview of the updates for 2020.

Rural Payments service

You can now use the Rural Payments service to:

Information has been published for farmers Claiming BPS 2020 and greening payments who are facing severe difficulties because of heavy rain and flooding.

Contact RPA

Scheme rules and guidance

  1. Basic Payment Scheme: rules for 2020
  2. Rural Payments Agency key dates 2020

Supporting guidance and forms

Useful information

  1. Rural payments: land guidance
  2. Rural payments: land use codes 2020
  3. RLE1 form and guidance
  4. Cross compliance 2020
Published 12 March 2020
Last updated 2 April 2020 + show all updates
  1. Latest news section updated to include update to Rural Payments service to view land parcel information for a date in the past.

  2. Update about crop diversification rules in Latest News

  3. Latest news updated to advise farmers about the relaxation of the 3 crop rule.

  4. First published.