BIOFUELS AND the Entry Level Scheme (ELS) proved to be popular topics in 2005. Here is what the Farmers Weekly Farmer Focus writers had to say about the topics.

ELS:

“I hope the Rural Development Service has been taking heed of the predicament the RPA got itself into…” Mark Ireland (May 6)

“What does annoy me is when I read comments from senior members of the RPA divorcing themselves from any blame.” Mark Ireland (Jun 3)

“I was somewhat surprised and amused to get two identical letters regarding changes to the ELS application process from the RDS regional managers of the East of England and Worcester. Do two great minds think alike?” Richard Ward (Jun 10)

“There are financial rewards and once you get organised with the [ELS] scheme it isn’t that daunting…you’re probably better off in the office filling in the forms than sowing an extra field of wheat.” Peter Hogg (30 Sep)

Biofuels:

“The high fuel prices are likely to open up new opportunities for arable farmers to produce renewable energy, but we are going to feel the squeeze until we get there.” Andrew Peddie (Aug 19)

“How can we push for biofuels if we’re not helping create a demand by using it on our own farms?” James Stafford (11 Nov)

“Farmers are still the plankton in the supply chain attempting to supply commodities at unsustainable prices, and leaving the serious profit margins to others.” Andrew Peddie (9 Dec)

Check out www.fwi.co.uk tomorrow (30 December) to read the Farmer Focus writers’ New Year resolutions and what they think will be the biggest influences on profits during 2006.