Know How / Brexit

See the latest news on Brexit government policy affecting the farming and agricultural sectors. Keep up-to-date with the developments on the future of farm subsidies and payments and how Brexit will affect UK imports and exports of food and the availability of the farm labour workforce. Get advice on how to future proof your farm in preparation for the UK leaving the European Community and find out how other farmers are planning for the future.

Latest Brexit news

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Defra relaxes rules on gene editing

Genetically engineered crop production has moved a step closer in the UK after the government relaxed legislation on gene editing. Unlike genetic modification which uses DNA material from other species,…


Scots propose measures to tackle labour shortage

The Scottish government has set out proposals to tackle the post-Brexit labour crisis and boost the number of working age people in rural communities. In a letter to the UK…


Defra's new ELM policy 'leaves farmers in the dark' say MPs

Defra’s plan to replace direct income aids to farmers with a “public money for public goods” scheme is based on “blind optimism”, lacks sufficient detail and fails to instil confidence…

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Practical advice

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Options for farmers to secure migrant labour from 2021

The government’s proposed points-based immigration system (PBS) looks like it could do little to help the agricultural and horticultural sectors, according to the most recent details. Due to take effect…


10 tips to build a Brexit cash reserve for dairy farmers

Dairy producers should consider trimming capital expenditure and fixing costs to build up a cash reserve ahead of potential shocks from a no-deal Brexit, a dairy farm consultant has said.…


Expert advice on tendering for a farm tenancy ahead of Brexit

Scrutinising tenancy agreements, checking break clauses and taking on critical business planning are all key to submitting a tender amid the Brexit turmoil. Despite the uncertainties, there has been a…


Business Clinic: Using arable profits to prepare for Brexit

Whether you have a legal, tax, insurance, management or land issue, Farmers Weekly’s Business Clinic experts can help. Here, Mark Chatterton of accountant Duncan & Toplis advises on the tax…


What are the prospects for the UK meat industry post-Brexit?

Brexit offers opportunities to exploit the potential of British red meat production. But overcoming trade barriers, investing in processing capacity and meeting market requirements will take time and a change…

Case studies

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Budget for Brexit in a brave new world of lower subsidies

In the second part of our series on planning for Brexit, we examine one of the biggest farming operations in the UK and how it is preparing for life outside…


How an award-winning arable farm is preparing for Brexit

Arable growers are likely to have a six-year breathing space to prepare for the ending of EU-style area-based subsidies, and for the brave new world of a UK farming support package…


Farming without subsidy - New Zealand's experience

UK farmers must seize the opportunity of Brexit to ramp up productivity and become more competitive, industry leaders have been told. Former New Zealand agriculture minister Sir Lockwood Smith suggested…


Future of subsidies: Collaborate to cope with lower support

In the second of our series on coping with lower subsidies, David Jones talks to one arable farmer, who is also chairman of his local grain co-operative, about his long-term plans…


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Does the UK have too many sheep breeds?

Over the centuries a spectrum of breeds has evolved in Britain, from fast-growing, prolific lowland types to hardier, single-bearing ewes for the uplands. According to the National Sheep Association (NSA),…


Analysis: Rising input costs biggest worry for farmers

Farmers may have been upbeat about the health of most businesses during 2021, but prospects for the year ahead seem less buoyant, according to the latest Farmers Weekly Sentiment Survey.…


Aussie trade deal: Opportunities and threats to UK farmers

The post-Brexit free trade agreement between Britain and Australia offers a mix of threats and opportunities for UK farmers, according to an AHDB report. The levy board’s Horizon Report is…


Analysis: Farm policy gathers pace in UK devolved regions

If the first six months outside the EU were marked by Defra announcements of post-Brexit policy plans for English farmers, the past three months have at last seen some signs…


Analysis: Why food production must remain central to policy

One of the key improvements to the Agriculture Bill as it progressed to become an Act of Parliament last year was a commitment by government to hold a regular review…


Government encouraged to relax rules on gene editing

Government plans to accelerate the use of genetic technology have received a boost, with the publication of a new report setting out ways to free up the approvals process. Produced…


Survey uncovers lack of detail on farm payment plans

Farmers are keen to deliver the government's vision for a greener countryside – but desperately need more details to do so successfully. The stark warning follows a Farmers Weekly survey…


Analysis: What's on offer for farmers as the SFI takes shape

Slowly but surely, the post-Brexit jigsaw seems to be taking shape, with a number of government announcements and consultations in recent months providing a bit more detail on the shape…


Analysis: How Brexit affects farmers' access to pesticides

Adequate resources and a more pragmatic, science-based approach by UK regulators will be crucial to growers gaining better access to crop-protection tools after Brexit. Over recent years, plenty of criticism…


Trade and farm policy enter new era outside the EU

Brexit became reality at the start of the year, as the 11-month transition ended and the new Trade and Co-operation Agreement (TCA) with the EU kicked in. But what has…


Free trade and high standards can coexist, says trade adviser

This week saw the long-awaited publication of the Trade and Agriculture Commission (TAC) report setting out the principles the government should use when negotiating future free-trade agreements. It seeks to…


Waitrose food standards pledge - are others on board?

Supermarket chain Waitrose has broken ranks with the other UK retailers by promising it will never sell any products that do not meet the high standards of British farmers but…