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TFA outlines Brexit policy for farmers

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The Tenant Farmers Association is reiterating its plans to replace the two-pillar CAP with its focus on area payments with a ’radical’ new three-pillar system. 

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The TFA would scrap the current area payment system
The TFA would scrap the current area payment system

The Tenant Farmers Association (TFA) is stepping up its calls for a ’radical change in the way that British farming should be supported’, following the vote to leave the EU.

 

The TFA is calling for a new three-pillar post-Brexit farm support policy that splits funding between environmental support, infrastructure grants and promoting of British farm products.

 

The association first outlined its policy in April and claims to be the first agricultural organisation to have developed a policy before the referendum vote.

 

The association will be promoting its post Brexit agricultural policy at the Great Yorkshire Show in Harrogate this week.

 

TFA chairman Stephen Wyrill said “Unlike other organisations, I am pleased the TFA thought about the shape of a post Brexit agricultural policy long before the result of the referendum was known.

 

"This has enabled the TFA to hit the ground running with Ministers, Civil Servants and other stakeholders rather than scrabbling around for a viable plan.

 

“Having made the decision to leave the EU it is important that we use our new found freedoms to develop a farm policy which delivers success for British farming including within the devolved administrations of our country."

 

He went onto outline a policy that would mark a radical move away from the current area-based direct payment schemes in place across the UK.

 

Three pillars

 

Mr Dunn said TFA would retain the current £3bn budget UK farmers receive under the CAP and spend it through three new pillars.

 

  • The first pillar would create a properly constituted, outcome focused agri-environment scheme which properly rewards individuals for environmental management.
  • Secondly there should be an infrastructural grant scheme to encourage the development of farm businesses taking into account economic, social and environmental resilience.
  • The third pillar would use public funding to promote British farm products, funds near market research, develop public procurement of British food and promote import substitution whilst finding beneficial export markets for British farm products.

 

Mr Wyrill added: “We also have some messages for Government on trade. To date we have relied upon the European Union to negotiate our trade deals.

 

"We now need highly skilled negotiators within the British civil service to assist our industry in having fair access to overseas markets for agricultural products.

 

"But they also need to ensure that British agriculture does not become the lever used to develop export markets in non-farming areas by granting unfavourable market access deals which will impact upon domestic markets in agricultural produce."

 

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