Much of the political commentary regarding the new Agri-Climate Rural Environment Scheme (ACRES) has focused on the upper payment rates attainable with little detail as yet as to what exactly farmers have to do.

In this week's edition, SUAS project manager Declan Byrne gives an honest appraisal of the challenges faced by farmers and positive outcomes from the EU-funded agri-environment project. It is critical that learnings from such projects are considered in finalising the programme for ACRES.