Annex E: Agricultural activity: calculating 'Active Farmer' eligibility
An important part of being eligible to apply for the Basic Payment Scheme, is being able to meet the requirements of being a 'farmer' who undertakes an 'agricultural activity'. An agricultural activity can include the production, rearing or growing of agricultural products, including harvesting, milking, breeding animals, and keeping animals for farming purposes.
If you have land which is naturally kept in a state suitable for cultivation and grazing (essentially all land in Payment Regions two and three) and it represents more than half of your holding (inclusive of any seasonal land) you must also meet rules on exercising a minimum activity.
In terms of agricultural livestock production on land in Payment Regions two and three, the minimum activity is:
- a stocking density of less than 0.05 livestock units per hectare, or
- a stocking density of less than 0.05 livestock units per hectare where the farmer can demonstrate that such a stocking density is appropriate for the land by reference to the historic records kept in respect of the carrying capacity of the holding, or
- an environmental management agreement with Scottish Natural Heritage or an agri-environment commitment within which the farmer is subject to the regulations for rural development support.
For the purposes of the stocking density calculation, a 'livestock unit' means a unit of measurement of livestock numbers. Each of the following constitutes one livestock unit:
- one beef cow over 24 months of age
- 1.66 beef cows over 20 months and up to and including 24 months of age
- one dairy cow over 24 months of age
- 1.66 dairy cows over 20 months and up to and including 24 months of age
- 6.66 breeding ewes or gimmers
- 6.66 breeding goats kept as part of a regular breeding herd for fibre production
- 3.33 breeding llamas kept as part of a regular breeding herd
- 2.5 farmed deer: adult stags (27 months and over)
- 3.33 farmed deer: hinds, including suckling calves (27 months and over)
- 5 farmed deer: juveniles (6 to 27 months).