FARM INCOMES are expected to fall by 2.6% in real terms for 2004 taking the Total Income From Farming to £3.24 billion.

DEFRA statistics released on Tue (Nov 30) suggest the TIFF will rise by 0.2% in current prices but this equates to a fall of 2.6% in real terms.

The TIFF per full-time person is also forecast to fall by 1.1% in real terms to £16,000.

DEFRA has also predicted that the number of farmers in the UK will fall by 1.5%.

Junior DEFRA minister Lord Whitty said: “Today‘s figures reflect the challenges farmers faced this year, not least a difficult harvest and lower prices for cereals and livestock in the second half of the year.

“However, farmers are rising to the challenges and opportunities of a changing world. For example, more than half of full-time farms have diversified, with many earning more from diversification than farming.” 

Total Income From Farming is the income generated by production within the farming industry, including subsidies.

The figure represents profits plus remuneration for work done by owners and other unpaid workers.