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NFU responds to Defra's agricultural transition roadmap -

The government has unveiled its roadmap which outlines the changes that will come into force over a period of seven years in order to help farmers adapt and plan for the future.

The Path to Sustainable Farming sets out in more detail the changes the government are going to make, and what they will mean in practice for farmers.

Responding to the publication of Defra’s agricultural transition roadmap, NFU President Minette Batters said: “Defra has embraced many of the industry’s ideas for sustainable farming and food production in designing this new agricultural policy for England. Farming is changing and we look forward to working with Ministers and officials to co-create the schemes that will help farmers to improve productivity and animal welfare, encourage innovation and realise our ambition to produce increasingly climate-friendly food. However, the rate at which direct support reductions will take place, which we understand will not be applied in other parts of the UK, leaves English farmers with significant questions. These payments have been a lifeline for many farmers especially when prices or growing conditions have been volatile and will be very difficult to replace in the first four years of this transition. Can Ministers be sure that new schemes will be available at scale to deliver redirected BPS payments?”

“Take livestock farmers for example, who we project will have lost between 60% and 80% of their income by 2024 as a result of these reductions. What changes will Defra make to ensure that the new Environmental Land Management schemes offer rewards that provide a genuine income for their businesses while maintaining food production? These are the questions Defra needs to answer urgently, for every farming sector and every part of the country.”

Posted on: 30 November 2020

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