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Upland farms face 37% funding cut since Brexit


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Upland farms produce mainly lamb and beef. In Wales (which has a lot of upland) it is 85% lamb- or used to be. As Rees Mogg said recently, we can buy food cheaply from abroad, so why worry? Well, the attacks on ships in the Red Sea show how unwise the UK is to source its food from the other side of the world, while we have turned our backs on a market just a few miles away. Madness! Utter madness!

Upland farms in England are facing a serious collapse in their incomes under Defra’s post-Brexit agricultural support schemes, modelling by the NFU has revealed.

Senior NFU officials said ministers repeatedly told farmers in the uplands that they would be recognised for the work they do and be no worse off after Brexit, but this is not borne out by the figures.

The NFU used real data from six farms in the English uplands to compare how they would fare financially under the transition from direct payments to Defra’s Environmental Land Management (ELM) programme.  

See also: Defra figures spell looming disaster for the uplands

They found that on average, the upland farming businesses lost 37% of their support payments under the current Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) – the first component of ELM – and Countryside Stewardship (CS) options.


Edited by pellinore
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  • The title was changed to Upland farms face 37% funding cut since Brexit

I realise I haven't explained the background: while we were in the Single Market, the UK farmers were paid subsidies known as CAP (Common Agricultural Payment). These payments rewarded farmers for investing in the fertilizers, pesticides and seeds and immature livestock for the next season (which might result in a loss, as we have seen this year due to the floods). UK farmers were told that if they supported Brexit, they would receive payments equal to, or even exceed CAP and targeted to their own specific farms to encourage UK self-sufficiency. The government has not kept its word, and payments have been 20% or more less than CAP, and are due to be phased out completely in 5 years time. The government's policy is that it is cheaper to buy foodstuffs from around the world than subsidise our farmers. So the farmers have been sold out.


Edited by pellinore
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