Minister Poots Extends Closing Date To Business Development Groups Scheme

Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister, Edwin Poots, has extended the closing date for applications to the Business Development Groups (BDGs) Scheme, during a visit to CAFRE’s Greenmount Campus.

Minister Poots said; “I am pleased to announce that the closing date for the BDGs Scheme has been extended by one week to 4pm on Friday 31 January 2020 to facilitate additional applications. This is the fifth application window to the BDG Scheme and there has been a positive response to date.

However, I would encourage all farmers who are not already in a Group to apply before the new closing date. The addition of an environmental option within this tranche demonstrates my Department’s focus to deliver productive agriculture in line with enhanced environmental benefit.

“The Business Development Groups Scheme has delivered benefits to many farm businesses by bringing small groups of farmers together locally, to enhance their knowledge of business management, the environment and innovative ways of working. Now is the time to take up the opportunity to join the Scheme and become a member of a Group near you.”

For further information on the Business Development Groups Scheme, visit  or call 028 9442 6790 or e-mail

Assistance with completing on-line applications is available at all DAERA Direct offices during opening hours and additional support is available between 5pm and 8pm at Loughry Campus on Wednesday 29 January. 

Knowledge Transfer through Business Development Groups (BDGs) is a Scheme partly funded by the EU through the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020.