A move from historic single farm payments to a single flat-rate system for the whole of Wales could have a catastrophic impact on Welsh lowland farmers, the Farmers Union of Wales has warned.
The FUW explained that the move to flat-rate payments was inevitable because, over time, historic receipts would no longer accurately reflect farm business practices.
“We need to start looking at all the options to find the best solution for the Welsh industry,” said FUW president Gareth Vaughan.
Mr Vaughan used the Royal Welsh Show to launch a detailed report called An Analysis of the Welsh Single Payment Regime and the Impact of Possible Flat-Rate Single Payment Models.
“This [report] suggests that a single flat-rate payment for the whole of Wales would result in a £25m fall in non-LFA payments, which would have a catastrophic impact for lowland farmers,” Mr Vaughan claimed.
The process of analysing possible single payment options had already been started by the Welsh Assembly Government and a stakeholder group established to look at possible options for Wales.
“We have therefore built upon the work already done by the assembly in order to alert the industry to what might be expected in future, by providing a detailed analysis of the status quo, and the possible implications of moves to different payment regimes,” Mr Vaughan said.