Enemies of the Farmer?


Roger Helmer NFU visit

Discussing the black grass problem with Lincolnshire farmers

“Friends of the Earth” are at it again.  This time they’re warning farmers of the dreadful loss of income after Brexit, when they get no more CAP funding. “Lincolnshire farmers could be at risk of losing more than £128 million after Brexit”.

They helpfully break down the figures with spurious exactitude, by constituency, with Louth & Horncastle facing the biggest hit at £33 million.

This is typical scaremongering from “Friends of the Earth”.  The government has formally committed to maintain agricultural funding for at least two years after Brexit, and there is a broad political consensus that agriculture is vitally important for food security, for our balance of payments, and for the maintenance of the British countryside and landscape which we all love.

There is a widespread belief that EU agricultural support is very generous.  In fact broad comparisons with other countries around the world show that the EU is about in the middle of the pack of advanced economies in terms of percentage of GDP devoted to agriculture.

While in an ideal world we might prefer a free-market model, the fact is that something like half of farm incomes come from farm support.  We cannot expect our farmers to compete successfully in world markets unless they have support broadly comparable to that in other advanced economies.

We should recall that Britain had a perfectly good farm support system before we joined the EU, and we will have a perfectly good farm support system after we leave.  We will also hopefully have a much simpler regulatory system designed for the UK, rather than the EU’s massively bureaucratic approach.  We want farmers to be out raising crops and cattle – not sitting indoors filling in compliance forms.

It is simplistic scaremongering for “Friends of the Earth” to look at current levels of subsidy and claim they are at risk.  They’re not so much Friends of the Earth – more Enemies of the Farmer.

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24 Responses to Enemies of the Farmer?

  1. Shieldsman says:

    On immigration the Media failed to bring to the Public’s attention the statement by the G7 confirming the Right of countries to have sovereign immigration policies.
    Hidden away in the G7 communique (EU signatories – Merkel, Macron, May and Gentiloni) under Human Mobility is –
    24. The ongoing large-­‐scale movement of migrants and refugees is a global trend that, given its implications for security and human rights, calls for coordinated efforts at the national and international level.
    The final sentence: – At the same time, while upholding the human rights of all migrants and refugees, we reaffirm the sovereign rights of states, individually and collectively, to control their own borders and to establish policies in their own national interest and national security.

    These rights have been usurped by the EU under Schengen and their insistence on freedom of movement (residence).

  2. Simon Blanchard says:

    Friends of the Earth (FOTE)are of course using the CAP subsidy as a political weapon in the hope of reversing the referendum decision, no doubt, but it also serves a useful purpose in making the farmers voice heard. The risk is if they are not heard the government will conveniently forget about them.
    My old mentor I used to work for out in the field, had this useful phraseology he used to say when a cup of tea was wanting. “If you don’t ask, you don’t get” Nearly every time we got our cup of tea from the very obliging staff member. What FOTE are doing is asking the government whoever wins on June 8th not to forget the farmers when we leave the tyranny that is the EU. I imagine a few others will calling out too, who get their money from the EU gravy train.

  3. catalanbrian says:

    Yes, the farm subsidy system is currently incredibly wasteful with most of the money going to large farmers who lay waste to the country with one crop systems. It needs changing to focus more on the small farmers who really need the assistance and who are the backbone of the UK’s agricultural production. Sadly I think that to be unlikely

  4. Jane Davies says:

    Are landowners/ farmers still going to get subsidies for the vile wind turbines?

    • catalanbrian says:

      Farmers /Landowners do not get any subsidies for wind turbines on their land. It is the power companies who get the subsidies. Maybe this allows the power companies to pay to the farmer a larger amount than they would otherwise get, but there is no direct subsidy.

      • KennieD says:

        It was said that Dodgy Dave Cameron’s father-in-law, a rich landowner with lots of wind turbines on his large area of land, was and is receiving very large sums of money from the taxpayer. I believe he is not a farmer, just a landowner.

      • Jane Davies says:

        KennieD……It was the fact that Camerons father and his fellow billionaire landowners receive payments from the taxpayer purse for having wind turbines on their land that prompted my question.

      • catweazle666 says:

        “Farmers /Landowners do not get any subsidies for wind turbines on their land.”
        Still making stuff up Brian?
        You haven’t a clue have you?
        But that has never stopped you from getting a dig in, has it?

      • catalanbrian says:

        It is you, weasel, that makes things up. Farmers do not, repeat NOT, get any direct subsidies for having wind turbines on their land. Get your facts straight before you next slither out from beneath your stone, you nasty argumentative little fool

      • catweazle666 says:

        As usual.
        Renting land for wind farms
        Industrial Wind Farm
        Land rental for wind farms
        Can I rent my land for a wind farm?
        If you are a landowner or farmer with a suitably sized and located space for large scale wind turbine installations (5MW plus, around 2-20 turbines), you may be able to rent your land to specialist wind developers. These companies will usually pay for 100% of the project, and will pay you a sum based on the number of wind turbines and their total performance/energy output.


      • catalanbrian says:

        None of those are subsidies, you fool. Get back under your stone!

      • catweazle666 says:

        “None of those are subsidies, you fool. Get back under your stone!”

        Where do you think the money comes from, cretin?

    • Ex-expat Colin says:

      Yes…plus all the hangers on – lobbyists/facilitators/power utils indirectly:

  5. John Payne says:

    Introduce Agriculture Act 1947. Easy Peasy
    The Act gave farmers an assured market and guaranteed prices for their produce, the objective of this being, in the words of the Minister of Agriculture Tom Williams, “to promote a healthy and efficient agriculture capable of producing that part of the nation’s food which is required from home sources at the lowest price consistent with the provision of adequate remuneration and decent living conditions for farmers and workers, with a reasonable return on capital invested

    Whats wrong with that???

    • KennieD says:

      John Payne: “Whats wrong with that???”
      It is all one sentence, far too long and unwieldy. Not very good English.

  6. John Payne says:

    Great Britain introduced the Agriculture Act 1947 after the 2nd world war. We were forced to cancel the Act when we joined the Common Market CAP. Those thinking we will give up subsidies to Farmers are alarmists. I propose we introduced the principles of that Act which are sensible and reduce movement of agriculture products from Country to Country

    • KennieD says:

      John Payne,
      How do you expect to win a debate if you cannot speak/write coherently?
      Think for yourself, don’t just ‘cut’n’paste’, especially from “wikipedia.

      • John Payne says:

        It is clear you are not interested in protecting our farmers. I am sorry if you lack understanding of the English Language, which leads you to be confused about content in a summary paragraph as written by Wikipedia. They are constantly asking for corrections so if you are offended i suggest you make your complaint to the source

  7. Shieldsman says:

    Windfarms, without them the landowner would not get paid the rental. The Power Companies would not build them and sell them on without a Government subsidy, paid for by the consumer levy and carbon tax.

  8. Ian Terry says:

    It just might be a very good time to call in the handouts and for farmers to have to make the choice: Am I a power station or a farm? farmers with all the extra money from turbine/solar/bio mass rental payments are skewing up the industry as those without cannot compete in the open auction arena. See it day in and day out,

  9. How on earth is Brexit of any interest to Friends of the Earth? What has Britain’s membership of the EU or otherwise to do with environmentalism? Loons.

  10. KennieD says:

    The owners and operators of windfarms receive very large subsidies from the taxpayer for the miserable amount of very intermittently- produced electrical power. The taxpayer also pays large amounts of money to other companies to very inefficiently wait on standby for when there is no or too much wind.
    From these subsidies the windmill owners pay a rent to the farmers/landowners. These rents are an income the farmer/landowner would not receive if it were not for the subsidies to the windmill owners.
    Therefore, indirectly, the farmer/landowner receives taxpayer subsidies.
    Finally, brian, try not to be so rude to others all the time.

    • catalanbrian says:

      That is exactly what I stated in my first post on the subject of subsidies. As far as being rude is concerned I had made no rude comment until the weasel was rude to me.

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