Janet Dwyer in Farmers Weekly

CCRI Director, Janet Dwyer, was interviewed by Farmers Weekly following discussions at the Rural Services Network conference last week, regarding the possible implications of Brexit on farm subsidies.

She commented that farmers should most likely prepare for a reduction in direct payments when the UK leaves the EU, despite the current government’s pledge to maintain direct payments until 2020.

Janet told Farmers Weekly,

“Whichever government has been in power, the message has always been that it doesn’t believe in the principle of subsidising farmers for the purpose of either income support or market stability. Direct payments do not fit with the UK government’s official view about how agriculture should be treated as an industry, and this attitude towards farming has been consistent in policy statements for more than 30 years.”

However, despite a likely reduction in direct support, Janet said that farmers would have different options and business models that they could pursue.

“It will depend on the sort of skills you have within your own farm unit – and what sort of land you have – and what kind of people are living near you and what potential markets there might be.”

“A large number of farm businesses have already diversified – and this trend seems likely to continue as a way of building greater resilience to market uncertainty.Encouraging new skills and business ideas within the sector are also very important, for the future.”

Read the full article.