April 21, 2020

European Innovation Partnership Scheme – closing date Monday 27 April.

CAFRE) is delivering a pilot European Innovation Partnership Scheme to encourage innovation on Northern Ireland’s farms. Funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), CAFRE will be awarding funding to help bring together expertise (for example, advisers, researchers and supply chain businesses) to work in partnership with farmers to find solutions to address specific issues or to develop opportunities for the farming sector.

Applications must be made by a collaboration of at least two people from different organisations based in Northern Ireland who will work together as an Operational Group. The composition of the group will vary according to the focus of each project with at least one of the applicants being from an active farm business.

Funding is available in two stages. Initial Stage 1 funding of £4987 is available to help bring together expertise as Operational Groups to investigate the issue or opportunity. Groups are asked not to come together physically but collaborate electronically to reduce the opportunity for the transfer of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Operational Groups who are awarded this initial funding will then further develop their project action plans and apply for Stage 2 funding of up to £120,000 to implement their project.

There will also be funding of up to £30,000 available for capital expenditure associated with the project which will be paid at a grant rate of 50% and must contribute positively to at least one of the following themes: improving productivity; increasing resilience; improving environmental sustainability or enhancing the supply chain. Projects might range from the development of new products, practices, processes and technologies on farms, to testing and adapting of existing technologies and processes in new geographical and environmental contexts.

Anybody who is interested in the European Innovation Partnerships Scheme can find out more information HERE and complete an ONLINE APPLICATION. Applications for Stage 1 – Establishment of an Operational Group open on Monday 30 March and will close at 4pm on Monday 27 April.

Applicants that are successful at Stage 1 will have more time to further develop their ideas before submitting a full Stage 2 application by Friday 28 August 2020.

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