For the Peak District Farming Community
Farming in the UK is a high tech business in many ways these days, sheep now use EID (electronic identification tags) enabling the reading of ear tag numbers by the wave of a wand, new tractors use advanced programming and computers to monitor field applications, but one of the most useful tools for farmers is the internet!
The internet opens up a wide expanse of tools and knowledge for use in the farm business: from buying and selling machinery and livestock, researching price trends, finding out information in minutes that would have previously taken hours and a trip to the library, and filing compulsory forms.
Pig movements now have to be recorded online, most cattle movements are now recorded on line https://secure.services.defra.gov.uk/wps/portal/ctso and sheep movements will go online over the next few years.
Currently SPS (Single Farm Payment) can be applied for on paper or online but again will undoubtedly end up moving solely online. https://www.gov.uk/single-payment-scheme-online
Other services available online include HMRC services and the filing of VAT returns. http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/vat/vat-online/index.htm
Using online services can help farm businesses to run more efficiently and cost effectively. Why store paper copies of documents that can be done online? Why pay for stamps when email is free?
The Farming Life Centre http://www.thefarminglifecentre.org.uk/ runs a series of free drop in clinics for farmers, the aim of which is to show farmers the benefits of online services and provide an overview of how to use them. Sessions are one-to-one or one to a few and places must be booked by phoning the Centre on 01298 85162 or Jonathan Charlesworth, Farm Business Development Officer on 07410 550616.