Richard Lochhead: DEFRA team must understand Scottish needs

The new DEFRA team is being urged to take into account the unique needs of Scottish farmers ahead of crucial EU talks on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) this week.

Scottish rural affairs secretary Richard Lochhead was due to meet the new DEFRA team today (Monday 24 September) to put forward Scotland’s needs ahead of EU discussions on CAP reform.

“It is absolutely vital the unique needs of Scotland’s farmers are quickly understood by the new DEFRA team. I will be focussing on communicating our priorities and highlighting where our needs differ from that of the rest of the UK, such as on coupled support and on the future of direct payments,” said Mr Lochhead.

“These once in a generation reforms will determine the future of our farming industry in Scotland. It is critical for our farmers, and future generations of farmers, that we get it right.”
Richard Lochhead

“It is not at all ideal that both farming ministers have been replaced in the middle of these hugely complex and vitally important negotiations, and I hope the knowledge and experience devolved administration ministers have gained in previous years and through this negotiation process will be utilised fully as we move forward.

“These once in a generation reforms will determine the future of our farming industry in Scotland. It is critical for our farmers, and future generations of farmers, that we get it right.”

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