Farmers wanting professional advice will no longer have to ring around dozens of organisations before getting through to the right source, said Agriculture Minister Jim Paice as he announced that a new, simpler Government advice service will launch in the New Year.
Defra’s new Farming Advice Service (FAS) will offer a one-stop-shop to farmers needing advice on subjects including cross compliance, nutrient management, competitiveness, and climate change adaption and mitigation.
The new service replaces the old cross compliance advice programme and will now cover a much broader range of subjects, with a central contact point to help farmers find specialist advice on improving their economic and environmental performance.
Agriculture Minister Jim Paice said:
“Good advice is essential to the running of any business and this new advisory service will make sure farmers can get the most out of their farms.
“The current array of advice from numerous organisations is bewildering and this more integrated service will make access to help both faster and less complicated.”
Because the Government wants to deliver the best and most up-to-date advice to farmers, Defra is working with industry and other stakeholders such as the NFU and CLA to set up the new service which launches on January 3 2012.
The helpline number for technical questions and advice is 0845 345 1302. The new website address will be www.defra.gov.uk/farming-advice. Both will go live in the New Year.