Consultation on Wales Sustainable Farming Scheme

21 March 2024

The Welsh Government consultation into the Sustainable Farming Scheme (SFS) recently concluded.

This was the final step in delivering the SFS, which crucially calls for a mandatory 10% woodland cover on farmland in Wales. The consultation set out proposals, detailing:

  • how farmers will be rewarded for responding to the climate and nature emergencies, as well as producing food in a sustainable way
  • how the scheme meets the objectives of Sustainable Land Management (SLM)
  • support available

Confor prepared an industry response in collaboration with members in Wales. This full document is available below.

We sought clarity on the permitted species mixtures of required habitat management areas, the timelines for site management plans, and the implications of long-term forestry rotations for tenant farmers.

Overall, we welcome the 10% tree cover rule, particularly as the requirements allow for a range of management practices and unplantable areas are removed from the land calculations. Additionally, we made it clear that the forestry sector is well-suited and ready to provide support to farmers undergoing this transition.

The consultation documents can be found here >>

Sustainable Farming Scheme: Confor Response to the Welsh Government Consultation