Welsh farmers with environmental land management contracts have been given a £62.9 million funding lifeline with a two-year stay of execution for Glastir agreements.

The provision of funding to maintain agreements until 2021 is part of an £80 million package which includes grants for tackling on-farm pollution and as part-payment for equipment and machinery that increase a farm’s profitability.

Cabinet secretary Lesley Griffiths said it would support farmers facing the “considerable challenges’’ of Brexit.

“The extension of all Glastir advanced, commons and organics agreements to 2021 will provide certainty for land managers and ensure the ongoing delivery of important environmental outcomes,’’ she said.

Wales’s 17 environmental schemes are paid for with money from the European Union’s Rural Development Programme but will be replaced by a so-called public goods scheme when the Welsh government implements its own farm support strategy post-Brexit.

Extending current agreements is intended to help farmers make the “smooth transition’’ to Wales’s new land management scheme, Mrs Griffiths has said.

Carmarthenshire beef and sheep farmer Colin Millichap recalls the difficulties caused by the funding gap when Glastir’s predecessor, Tir Gofal, ended.

He welcomed the news that his current contract would be extended.

“Glastir is an important source of income for us, we can’t afford to do without that money,’’ admitted Mr Millichap, of Llwynnoyadd near Brecon.

He worries about the ‘outcomes-based’ requirement of the proposed Public Goods Scheme.

“Glastir gives clear direction on what is expected of us but with a scheme that relies on outcomes, those change from year to year,’’ he said.

“Under the public goods scheme, what if a crop we plant for nesting birds fails in a dry summer, does that mean we won’t get paid for that work because the outcome won’t have been achieved?’’