Farmers are building up record debts as they struggle to cope with a sharp drop in the price of wheat, milk and other commodities. Farmers borrowed £17.8bn in 2015, driven by cash flow problems, the NFU revealed at its annual conference in Birmingham.
NFU economist Anand Dosa said that agricultural borrowings had doubled in less than a decade. There had been a double digit rise in borrowings since 2012.
However, Allan Wilkinson, head of food and agriculture at HSBC, said that indebtedness remained 'very small' compared with the value of assets. Land values had remained relatively resilient.