Strong Pound knocks down headage cash

By FWi staff

UK farmers are likely to receive lower livestock headage payments than their European counterparts next year due to the strong Pound.

The NFU is preparing to claim agrimoney compensation to make up the deficit.

European farms are guaranteed higher payments under Agenda 2000.

For example, beef special premium payments will rise from Euro122 to Euro136 next year, and suckler cow payments from Euro163 to Euro182.

Slaughter premiums for adult cattle and calves are set to double, to Euro53 and Euro33.

But in the UK, subsidies have to be converted from Euros into Pounds using the average exchange rate during December.

A recent rally in the Euro is helping; it was worth 61.9p on Thursday (07 December), a 4% gain in the past 11 days.

But while headage payments will rise a few Pounds, the gain is still well short of that seen in the eurozone.

The average rate for the first seven days suggests UK beef and sheep farmers will be entitled to 15m-20m in agrimoney compensation.

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