Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Farm income drops under two Brexit scenarios

The AHDB has modelled two Brexit scenarios, UK-EU free trade area and WTO UK tariffs: Assessment report

Farm business income drops under both Brexit scenarios for nearly all of the farm and enterprise types covered. For most sectors the main driver of the fall is expected increase in labour costs. However, in the Less Favoured Area (LFA) and lowland beef and sheep farms falls in production returns (from cattle and sheep sales) are much more substantial.

Most sectors fare significantly better under a UK-EU FTA scenario. In general terms trade impacts vary depending on whether the UK is a net importer or net exporter. Net importing sectors generally gain from rising prices, whereas net exporting sectors see falls. Under the WTO: UK tariffs scenario some net importing sectors (beef and pigs) also experience a price fall as the model expects cheaper world market product to make its way to the UK market.

As with the original 2017 study there is substantial variability of results by farm size and performance levels. The high performing farms, in terms efficiency of converting inputs to outputs, remain profitable under both scenarios.

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