THE NEED for banks to be flexible in their approach to farmers once the single farm payment is introduced has been highlighted by NFU Scotland.

Union officials recently met the Committee of Scottish Clearing Banks (CSCB) to discuss the financial outlook for Scottish farming in the wake of CAP reforms.

After the meeting, union president John Kinnaird said: “Obviously, the cash flow pattern of our members‘ businesses will alter significantly after the introduction of the new single farm payment.

“While there will still be some balance payments from existing schemes to be paid in early 2005, after that farm businesses will receive one payment each year.

“The consequence could be short-term requirement for increased borrowing from the banks,” he said.