The Rural Development Programme POP is the Dutch implementation programme of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). The grants included in this programme are intended for the development, sustainability, and innovation of the agricultural sector, in accordance with European agricultural policy. POP3 will run until 2022 and covers the following main themes:
- Strengthening innovation, sustainability, and competitiveness
- Young farmers
- Nature and landscape
- Improving water quality
- LEADER (strengthening rural areas)
Who Can Apply?
The grant programme is intended for:
- Agricultural entrepreneurs;
- Landowners and users;
- Agricultural organisations;
- Nature and landscape organisations;
- Water authorities;
- Municipalities; and
- Partnerships between the abovementioned parties.
Applying for POP3
POP comprises a large number of schemes, which can be broadly divided into national and regional grants. National grants comprise the following themes:
- Participation in the recognised quality assurance calf scheme
- Broad weather insurance
- Investments in calf pens
- Non-productive investments for wading and meadow birds
- Pilot projects for the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)
For more information about these specific schemes (incl. conditions, budgets, and eligible costs), we kindly ask you to contact us.
The regional grants are published and implemented by the different Dutch provinces, and relate to the main themes mentioned at the top of this page. Below we briefly address some of the most relevant ones for which you can now apply.
POP3 Fryslân opens the programme Non-productive investments for water WFD-climate spring 2021, intended to support non-productive investments in the rural area that are related to the (re)design or transformation and management of the water system for agricultural, water, and climate purposes. Specifically, it concerns the following activities:
- Widening of other main watercourses that are too narrow;
- Widening and/or nature-friendly design of main water courses or storage canals that fall within the EU Water Framework Directive (KRW, in Dutch);
- Constructing or rearranging land surrounding KRW lakes or ponds with a maximum width of 20 meters (on average) or constructing or rearranging land that is or will be connected to the storage canals in such a way that fish can enter and leave the area during the spawning periods of most fish species, whereby a part of the land is permanently under water during the summer period with a water depth of up to 0.7 metres (on average), including the associated works (e.g., grafting plants) and constructing or adapting structures as necessary;
- Constructing fish passages;
- Climate measures that contribute to the conservation of water in, or on the soil, and to a higher groundwater level and/or measures that lead to the retention or storage of water, including the associated works and construction or necessary modification of structures, excluding drainage.
A total of € 3.4 million is available. The grant covers 100% of eligible costs and is open until 15 July 2021. Would you like to see what such a project could look like? We invite you to take a look at our project examples.
POP3 Zeeland will open on 30 April. This grant is intended for non-productive investments in the rural area of Zeeland that are related to the (re)design, or transformation and management of the water system for agricultural, water, and climate goals. The investments must have a direct link to agriculture. A total budget of €2.5 million is available. The grant covers 100% of eligible costs. The deadline is 30 July 2021.
LEADERZE is the province of Zeeland’s variant of the LEADER projects. The programme will open on 30 April and focusses on partnerships between (government) organisations and (agricultural) entrepreneurs, and/or private individuals who aim to improve the Zeeland countryside. Participation of national governments is compulsory for these projects. A total budget of € 289,471.92 is available for central and northern Zeeland, and € 190,387.27 for Zeelandic Flanders. The deadline is 31 December 2022.
The scheme for non-productive investments for biodiversity, nature, landscape, and hydrological measures against nitrogen deposition supports nature restoration measures. It explicitly concerns measures that protect the Natura 2000 network from nitrogen deposition and are included in the Natura 2000 management plans. Here too, a direct link to agriculture is necessary. The grant covers 100% of eligible costs. The total budget comprises €5,280,000. The scheme opens on 20 April and closes on 18 June 2021.
The Province of Noord-Holland is currently looking for new project ideas for the LEADER Kopkracht programme. Projects contribute to the sustainable development of the regional economy. Projects can cover the following themes:
- Timely anticipation of demographic developments;
- Stimulating the circular economy and sustainable energy;
- Expanding and improving the (agro)tourism infrastructure.
Project ideas can be submitted until 9 May.
The province of Zuid-Holland has also published several new POP3 grants. As of 7 June, grants can be requested for non-productive investments in the restoration or establishment of nature, biodiversity, and landscape in the Krimpenerwaard area. Applications must comprise at least €500,000. The total budget is €1.2 million, with a deadline of 8 July 2021.
Another €7 million is available for the improvement of water quality. This grant can be applied for, for example by the water boards, for the construction of nature-friendly banks and measures to counter subsidence. The budget is divided amongst the following management areas:
- The Delfland Water Board: € 2.3 million;
- Hoogheemraadschap van Schieland and Krimpenerwaard: € 1 million;
- The Rijnland Water Board: € 2,160,000;
- Hoogheemraadschap De Stichtse Rijnlanden: € 2 million.
Again, applications must comprise at least €500,000. The deadline is 17 July 2021.
POP3NB is intended for non-productive investments for nature or biodiversity recovery measures. The focus is on restoring existing natural forests that have been damaged by nitrogen deposition from agriculture and making these forests on sandy soils more resilient to future nitrogen deposition. A total budget of € 2,544,000 is available. The grant rate is 100%. The scheme is open from 24 May to 1 July 2021.
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