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Farmers who go organicto get more money

06 April 1998
Farmers who go organic
to get more money

MORE money for farmers who convert to organic methods will be announced later this year, according to Dr Jack Cunningham, minister of agriculture.

But organic farmers are not expected to be overjoyed because it means they will continue to receive no benefits beyond the five-year conversion payments.

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Farmers who go organicto get more money

06 April 1998
Farmers who go organic
to get more money

MORE money for farmers who convert to organic methods will be announced later this year, according to Dr Jack Cunningham, minister of agriculture.

He is considering an 80% increase for farmers converting to organic production. This follows last weeks announcement of an extra £337,000 for organic research and speeded-up payments to organic farmers.

A new review – which Dr Cunningham has just published – suggests that inducement for farmers converting to organic production, in areas currently eligible for arable subsidies, should be boosted from £101 an acre over five years to £182.

Dr Cunningham said Britains record of organic farming was “abysmal” and he said priority would be given to organic farmers under existing environmental schemes such as Countryside Stewardship.

Organic farmers are not expected to be overjoyed because it means they will continue to receive no benefits beyond the five-year conversion payments. They argue that they should receive maintenance payments like many organic farmers in other EU member states.

A seminar of organic farmers and environmental bodies will be held at the ministry tomorrow.

  • The Daily Telegraph 06/04/98 page 10

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