Tuesday, May 23, 2017

More time for farmers before subsidy phase out

The Conservative manifesto promises to keep farm support at current levels for the lifetime of the next Parliament. This means that farmers will have until 2022 to adjust to a reduction in subsidies, although the downside risk is that the longer time span may lead them to postpone necessary changes, especially when future policy remains uncertain.

According to farm manager George Eustice the intention is to focus on supporting small enterprises and those new to the industry. The introduction of government backed loans could see a revival of a version of the Agricultural Mortgage Corporation set up by Stanley Baldwin's government (it was sold to Lloyds in 1993).

The Government is also considering schemes to help older farmers retire and changes to tenancy legislation to create slightly longer tenancies.

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