All articles about Farm policy

Find out about UK and EU government agricultural policy and what it means for farmers. Be the first to hear the news on Defra’s plans for farm payments and subsidies post Brexit, and environmental schemes and funding. Hear how the NFU, AHDB and farm industry leaders’ lobby the government to help shape farm policy.

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Q&A: Using CCTV - what farmers need to know

Farmers are increasingly turning to CCTV to protect their farm from thefts. New technology has made it easier than ever to set up camera surveillance, but the rules around data…

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Case studies


Field to plate - diversification on Japanese farms

Japan’s food culture is built on strong regional associations and loyalties, alongside superb quality and freshness.  However, accelerating rural depopulation, falling farm incomes, concerns over food security and a crippling…


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…


Wild bird project – a blueprint for future farm support?

Farmers in the South West have helped to save a rare farmland bird in a 25-year collaboration with the RSPB.  Farmers and the RSPB don’t always see eye to eye,…


‘Defra blunder crippled my farm business’

Devon beef and dairy producer Winston Reed has seen the administrators called in at Cleave Farm, Templeton, near Tiverton – despite winning a four-year battle with Defra, which saw the…

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Analysis: What we've learned from government review of AHDB

Statutory levies are still the best means of funding the AHDB in the post-Brexit era, but farmers should be balloted every five years to confirm this approach and to say…


Peter Kendall speaks out on UK's food security

Queues of supermarket shoppers during the coronavirus pandemic are a stark reminder that feeding people should be right at the centre of government policy, argues Peter Kendall. The former AHDB…


Analysis: Can switch to vaccines work in bovine TB battle?

It took more than 15 months to come to fruition, but Defra has finally published its response to Professor Sir Charles Godfray's 2018 independent review into the government’s bovine TB…


Why government needs to listen to farmers for flood strategy

Farmers could have a key role to play in helping reduce flood risks faced by UK communities – but only if the government puts its money where its mouth is,…

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US farm antibiotics use 'five times higher' than in UK

US livestock receive dosage levels of antibiotics more than five times higher than those used on UK farms, new research shows. Figures published in a report (PDF) by the campaign…


Gene editing ‘vital’ for future of UK farming

Politicians, scientists and industry leaders have joined forces for a campaign to give UK farmers access to gene-editing technology. They want the UK government to ditch EU rules that block…


NI dairy and beef farmers to share in £25m Covid-19 aid fund

Beef and dairy farmers in Northern Ireland are set for a £25m funding boost, to help offset the negative income effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Announcing the package on a…


Tougher penalties for livestock worrying proposed in Scotland

Dog owners could face stricter penalties for livestock worrying in new legislation proposed for Scotland. The bill, brought forward by Emma Harper MSP, proposes tougher financial and custodial penalties, as…

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Liz Truss: US Trade deal will benefit UK farmers

Liz Truss, Secretary of State for International Trade, explains why she believes US trade talks will benefit UK farmers, despite concerns from the farming industry about being undercut by imported…


FW Opinion: Villiers - long on rhetoric, short on detail

Theresa Villiers may lack the charisma of her predecessor, Michael Gove – that much was made clear from the Defra secretary's lacklustre delivery at this week’s Oxford Farming Conference –…


Opinion: Did Michael Gove achieve anything at Defra?

Michael Gove’s 773 days as Defra secretary began with his astonishment at being selected for a Cabinet post at all. Telephoned during a leisurely Sunday lunch with friends in his…

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Video: Dairy farmer says government must act now on fodder

A Welsh dairy farmer is urging the government to step in to help prevent a looming fodder crisis this autumn. Hefyn Wilson, who farms 85 Holstein and 15 Jersey cows…

Video: Farm contractors demand hedgecutting rethink

Farmers and contractors gathered at a Northamptonshire farm for a petition rally to urge Defra to overturn the August hedgecutting ban. Agricultural contractors broke off from busy spraying and grass…

Andrea Leadsom replaces Truss as Defra secretary

Andrea Leadsom has been named as the new Defra secretary in prime minister Theresa May’s Cabinet reshuffle. The pro-Brexit campaigner and MP for South Northamptonshire dropped out of the Conservative leadership…


Video: Farmers plan second march through London

A protest which saw more than 1,000 farmers march through central London was so successful that organisers are planning to descend on the city again. A second march will take…

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