Farming Equipment and Technology Fund 2023 offer – key details

A farmer pictured in a tractor cab

This NFU guide to the FETF 23 (Farming Equipment and Technology Fund 2023) offer focuses on the key information to be aware of ahead of the application windows opening. This page will be updated as we move through the various stages of this grant offer.

Who is eligible?

The FETF 23 offer is open to farmers, horticulturists, contractors, and foresters in England.

For more information for poultry producers, jump to: Poultry eligible items.

For more information for dairy and livestock producers, jump to: Livestock & Dairy eligible items.

Grant information – core features 

Basis of funding – This grant offers funding to contribute to a specific list of equipment to increase productivity, boost environmental sustainability, better manage slurry and improve animal health and welfare. 

Competitive grants – The FETF 23 grant is competitive, and a famer will not automatically get a grant after applying for one. The success of an application(s) will depend on the number and value of applications the RPA receive for each theme of the grant. 

Two funding themes and timelines in one grant – Each of the following themes of this grant has a separate list of eligible items a farmer can seek grant funding for. There are also separate online application portals and different timelines for the following themes:

Productivity and Slurry

Grants for items under on the Productivity and Slurry list are available under the following categories:

  • horticulture
  • forestry
  • slurry management
  • arable 
  • livestock
  • resource management
  • general

Animal Health and Welfare

Grants for items on the Animal Health and Welfare list are available to farmers or contractors in the following sectors:

  • beef cattle
  • dairy cattle
  • sheep
  • pigs
  • laying hens
  • broilers

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Key deadlines

The online application window for Productivity and Slurry items opened on 21 February 2023 and closes on 4 April 2023. The Animal Health and Welfare application portal opened on 23 March 2023 and closes on 15 June 2023 at 12 noon.

The RPA state the claim submission deadlines for FETF 2023 will be confirmed in the Grant Funding Agreement sent to those that are successful with an application. The deadlines are expected to be October 2023 for Productivity and Slurry items and January 2024 for Animal Health and Welfare items.

Finalised dates will be published in due course.

Members should read the full guidance before applying for this productivity and animal health and welfare grant. There are sections on the government's website covering: how to apply, how to claim, terms and conditions, and the lists of the eligible items available under this grant offer. 

More information can be found on the government's website at: GOV.UK | Farming Equipment and Technology Fund (FETF) 2023

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How much money is available under the grant? 

The FETF 2023 grants are for a minimum of £1,000 and a maximum of £25,000 per theme.

This means the maximum grant you can receive for Productivity and Slurry items is £25,000 and the maximum grant you can receive for Animal Health and Welfare items is £25,000.

If you're successful and received funding in Round 1 you can still apply for up to £25,000 per theme. The minimum and maximum grant levels apply to 2023 only. In future, there may be a cap added for the total grant that can be claimed over more than one year.

Farmers can apply to either theme or both, for any of the eligible items that best suit their business.

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Eligible items

There were 120 items of equipment on the list under Round 1; there are now 203 items on the list for the FETF 23 offer.  

The 203 items are split down into 91 items for the Productivity and Slurry theme and 112 for the Animal Health and Welfare theme. For Animal Health and Welfare items, the RPA and Defra strongly recommend that farmers talk to a vet before they apply for these items to help them improve their health and welfare of their livestock. Farmers can get advice by phone, email, or as part of a vet visit. 

Productivity and Slurry items can be found in Annex 3 on the RPA's guidance, and Animal Health and Welfare items can be found in Annex 4.

Out of those lists there are:

  • 19 new items to aid productivity
  • 2 new items to help with better slurry management
  • 66 new items to support animal health and welfare (part of the Animal Health & Welfare Pathway).

There are 6 items that have been removed as stated in the guidance and explanation given.

The grant amount listed against each item in Annex 3 and Annex 4 of the aforementioned RPA guidance is the actual grant amount the RPA will pay a farmer and is a contribution towards the total cost of the item. It is the farmers' responsibility to fund the remaining cost of an item.

Items must be paid for in full before claiming your grant payment. Items must be purchased through a supplier or manufacturer not linked to the farmer’s business and must not be home built.

Transparency – Each eligible item has a score (out of 100) assigned to it based on a Defra / RPA assessment of how well it meets the objectives of the scheme as set out above. These scores are set out in the Annexes (for Productivity and Slurry items they range from 40 to 80 and for Animal Health and Welfare items 42 to 98). 

If either scheme theme is oversubscribed, the RPA will allocate funding to those items (or the average for a combination of items) applied for with the highest score first. This information was asked for after the over-subscription for Round 1 to help farmers understand why they were unsuccessful with an eligible application.


Poultry producers can apply for the following new items:

  • Automatic curtain system for controlling ventilation and/or lighting levels in poultry housing
  • Central computerised system capable of the integration of house management data in real-time as well as automated control of linked parameter management systems eg ventilation or heating
  • Automatic bird weigh scales
  • Feed bin weighing equipment 
  • Poultry perches (mushroom shaped)
  • Low level perches for use in broiler houses
  • Automatic enrichment feeder
  • Freestanding metal and/or polypropylene platforms and ramps for poultry to provide an elevated rest area and enrichment
  • Nipple drinker system
  • Metal platforms and ramps used either within or immediately adjacent to the system to aid movement into and around housing
  • Spin feeder
  • Feed system for split feeding
  • 3D weighing camera system
  • A fixed ultrasonic flow meter capable of accurately measuring water consumption

Livestock and Dairy

Livestock and Dairy producers can apply for funding for a range of items under the Animal Health and Welfare list. To read the full list of items visit the following relevant sections on the government's website:

Please note there are some livestock productivity items in the Productivity and Slurry list of eligible items - this list also has categories for items under horticulture, arable, slurry, resource management and general items.

Which is not eligible?

If the equipment a farmer wants is not listed, or does not meet the minimum specification, it is not eligible for this grant.

Only brand-new items can be funded through the FETF. Ex-demo, second hand and ‘try before you buy’ items are not eligible for this grant.

It is key to read the FETF 23 specifications carefully, as some may have changed since Round 1 as the whole list has been reviewed, despite the numbering remaining the same for items that were also offered under Round 1.

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Making your application

The RPA / Defra are encouraging anyone who was unsuccessful in the first round to apply again; there is no connection with Round 1 success or failure or withdrawal when it comes to applying for FETF 23.

Stage 1 – actions to take before applying

Read the information carefully – Before applying, ensure you've read the guidance in full and understand the requirements of the scheme, what is eligible and also what information is required when applying and following the application instructions. Understand how items can be purchased and when that process can start to avoid items being ineligible for the grant.

There will be a YouTube video to help with the application process. 

Check your Rural Payment Online details including permissions – Those who wish to apply need to be registered with the RPA’s Rural Payments service and have an SBI (Single Business Identifier). The RPA cannot process an application without this. Your application details must match exactly your records on the Rural Payments service to avoid delays or rejection. Find out more on how to register with the RPA. The RPA will contact you via email if your details do not match its records, and ask you to make any required changes and resubmit your application.  

Check the availability of items of interest with suppliers – you need to take account of the likely claim window deadlines by which time you will need to have to paid for and installed all the items before you can claim a grant towards them. Check the items will be compatible with existing systems and have suitable IT connectivity.

Stage 2 – what to do when the portal opens

From the 21 February 2023 you can use the Productivity and Slurry portal to submit your application. You have until midday on 4 April 2023 to complete your application for the Productivity and Slurry theme.

The Animal Health and Welfare FETF Application portal is expected to open in March. There is only one application allowed per online theme portal.

If an applicant makes a mistake on the portal or wants to add more items before the deadline, they must submit a new application re-entering all the items they want to apply for. If the RPA receive more than one application with the same SBI number, they will only consider the most recent application in each round.

It is therefore important to ensure you apply in good time – the earlier you submit your application, the more time you will have to fix any errors and submit a new application.

Stage 3 – after submitting your application

Your application will then be checked for eligibility and scored by the RPA. If your application is successful, the RPA will email you a GFA (Grant Funding Agreement) for each application submitted – either the Productivity and Slurry portal, or the Animal Health and Welfare portal, or both portals. 

Successful applicants will need to accept the GFA offer via the online acceptance portal by the date given in the email. A link will be provided by the RPA for you to do this. You will then be able to purchase all the items listed in the GFA before the end of the respective claim window. 

Please note that once the GFA offer has been accepted, you have to purchase all the items in your agreement unless exceptional circumstances apply and you have the RPA's written consent in advance. Make sure the purchased items meet the relevant item specification(s) listed in the guidance and start the process of purchasing as soon as you area allowed to from the RPA communication. 

If you accept a GFA, please be aware that you'll need to follow any guidance from the RPA about acknowledgement and publicity of the grant. The RPA / Defra is also legally required to publish data about grants made under the Productivity and Slurry portal.

Stage 4 – submitting a single claim for payment

Once you've paid for and installed the item(s) and they are in use (having followed the rules), submit a single claim for payment. The guidance on how to do this is detailed in the How to claim your grant section of the government's guidance. 

Ensure you read the guidance carefully on what needs to be submitted including the evidence (invoices / payment evidence / photos) and in what form it is required.

You'll receive your payment into the designated bank or building society account registered with the RPA. 

Stage 5 – after payment

Keep grant funded items at the location stated in your GFA offer operational and in good repair for five years from the date your claim is paid.

Record the items on the business asset register for a minimum of five years from the date of the claim is paid. Keep copies of relevant documentation, including invoices, receipts and bank or building society statements for seven years.

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How the RPA will prioritise items

Each theme application will be assessed separately and based on the criteria for either Productivity and Slurry or Animal Health and Welfare. 

The scores for each item applied for will be added up to give the total score for all items in the application and then used to work out the average score for the number of items that have requested.

The RPA will allocate funding starting with the highest scoring applications with the highest average scores that best meet the scoring criteria, until the available funding is fully allocated. This will set a minimum threshold for the round. The results of the previous application rounds do not affect this round.

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Find out more about Farming Investment Fund schemes:

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