The Food, Farming and Countryside Commission (FFCC) has called on Government to establish an Agroecology Development Bank to kickstart a ‘rural transformation’.
The group envisages that the bank would provide private finance to farmers to support a rapid transition to agroecology, as well as generating, collecting and sharing knowledge on agroecology.
The idea is to remove barriers to an agroecological transition for young and new entrants, tenant farmers and horticulture businesses.
The FFCC said setting up the bank would follow precedent already set in the energy, housing and transport sectors, and would help to deliver the Government’s climate and nature ambitions.
The recommendation was made in a new report from the FFCC, Farming Smarter: Investing in our future.
Chief executive of the FFCC Sue Pritchard said: “It is clear a transition to agroecology could help address multiple challenges – the climate and nature emergencies, the public health crisis and now a fair and green post-covid economic recovery.
“Yet, the practical support that would help some farmers make the transition is underdeveloped.
“Farming Smarter: Investing in our future is an important contribution. We urge the UK Government to take advantage of the opportunity to announce the Agroecology Development Bank in the package of measures at the forthcoming COP26 and enable much needed change at pace and scale.”