11 February 2000
Yeo digs at Brown for Archers gaffe

FARMING minister Nick Brown, fresh from last weeks attack by a chocolate éclair-wielding protester, was under fire again yesterday (10 February) in the House of Commons.

Tim Yeo, the shadow agriculture secretary, accused him of spending more time writing scripts for BBCs farming soap The Archers than helping British pig farmers.

Mr Yeos tongue-in-cheek remark was followed by criticism that Browns “weakness” was driving pig farmers out of business.

Although Mr Brown is not moonlighting as a radio scriptwriter, the BBC conceded that a scene in The Archers in which characters discussed favourably the governments position on agriculture was “inappropriate”.

The soaps organic farmers gave an enthusiastic response to the speech by Tony Blair to the National Farmers Union last week, despite derision from real farmers some of whom booed and hissed as he left the podium.