On 1 April 2024, there were 13,900 live SFI 2023 agreements, held by 13,400 farmers and land managers, and representing over 2 million hectares (ha) of land in England. To date, Defra has received over 20,000 applications to the SFI.  The SFI contains some management actions and some planning actions. 83% of farms in the SFI have at least one of the planning actions (actions IPM1, MOR1, NUM1 or SAM1). Among the management actions, the most popular are: 

  • No use of insecticide, nematicide or acaricide on arable crops and permanent crops (IPM4) – 430,000ha 
  • Establish and maintain herbal leys (SAM3) – 175,000ha 
  • Multi-species winter cover crops (SAM2) – 124,000ha 

There are 55,200,000 metres of hedgerows managed in agreements (action HRW2). However, not all metres of hedgerow in the action include both sides of the hedge. To estimate total hedgerows (both sides equivalent) in the scheme we adjust based on historic data from CS. This gives the estimate that there are currently 34,000km of total hedgerows under SFI management.    Read all the statistics for the Sustainable Farming Incentive on this page.