By 2025, Scottish farmers could lose £ 170 million, although Welsh and Northern Irish ministers also oppose the new scheme
As a result of Brexit, farmers in the devolved governments of the U.K. face substantial revenue losses that could threaten their ability to protect the countryside, ministers warned Thursday. At the Oxford Farming Conference, Fergus Ewing, Scotland’s cabinet minister for the rural economy, said Scottish farmers would lose about £ 170 million by 2025, compared to the subsidies they might have expected under the Common Agricultural Policy of the EU, which provided the UK as a whole with about £ 3 billion a year. “Significant cuts have been imposed on all devolved administrations without consultation,” he said. “This is not what farmers and growers in Scotland were promised if they voted for Brexit. “He also raised questions about the U.K. The post-Brexit government moved to a “public money for public goods,” scheme in which farmers will be paid in the future to protect the countryside, plant trees, conserve wildlife habitats and take action to avoid flooding. “I think the Treasury Department intends to eliminate payments to farmers under the guise of environmental payments,” he said. We will see the disappearance of payments over time if this is not reconsidered.
He cautioned that to grow food and preserve the landscape, farmers must continue to be compensated. “We don’t believe that food production can just be left to the market.” “We are very worried that cheap imported food could threaten British agriculture and have been lobbying against it for statutory security – protection that has been refused by the UK government,” said Lesley Griffiths, Secretary of the Environment for Wales. “Wales was very frustrated with the recent expenditure review. Westminster is receiving £ 242 million in [EU subsidy] replacement support. This falls well short of the aspirations of the Welsh Government. We have been told time and time again that Wales is no worse off when it comes to leaving the EU. Agriculture is a devolved matter, so administrations are responsible for wide areas of agricultural policy, but subsidies under the Popular Agricultural Policy of the EU have been handled by the central government, which would also be responsible for replacing the subsidy after Brexit. George Eustice, State Secretary for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, insisted that Br. “If we are to meet the targets we have for the environment and give space to nature, then we need to rebalance the incentives in our future agricultural policy to promote sustainability,” he said. The conference heard that farmers in the devolved administrations still have serious concerns about attempts to re-wild the countryside. “Rewilding has been a complete and utter failure … [compared to]using the assets we have for food production in a way that benefits the environment in any way. “Rewilding has been a complete and complete failure… [compared to]using the assets we have for food production in any way that benefits the environment. Ewing said Scotland needs a new approach – more people. We have no plans for new animals including wolverines to be added.
I want to repopulate rural Scotland – we want to get people back into the equation.
Much of Scotland is rural and sparsely populated, he said. A mixed reception has been given to Eustice’s proposals for gene editing. While the moves were welcomed by many farmers, questions were raised about how they could impact trade with the EU. Ewing pointed out that the EU itself is reassessing the potential of gene editing and may change its position to allow such techniques within the next few months. Eustice replied, “We don’t have to hang on the coat-tails of Brussels and see what they do first. Once we get rid of EU policies, we can run the system better.”