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Welsh Government drought response ‘little comfort’ to farmers

NFU Cymru president John Davies has said the Welsh Government response to the recent hot, dry weather will provide ‘little comfort’ to farmers.


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Welsh Government drought response ‘little comfort’ to farmers, says NFU Cymru

Mr Davies was commenting on a ministerial statement which was made following the emergency drought summit held at the Royal Welsh Show.

 

In the statement, Rural Affairs Cabinet Secretary Lesley Griffiths promised to consider the option of making advance Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) payments this year, but expressed concerns about disadvantaging some farmers who would not benefit from the move because they do not have all the checks completed on their claim.

 

She also highlighted a number of derogations which had already been made to Glastir schemes on sward heights and stocking rates, winter fodder, winter bedding and access to water.


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But Mr Davies pointed out other European countries had done more to take advantage of a relaxation of EU rules which allowed Governments to provide cash for fodder aid.

 

He said: “The recent Welsh Government statement will provide little comfort for farmers who are continuing to have challenges with the lack of water, crop loss and shortage of fodder for livestock.

 

“In the last few days, we have seen a number of European countries implement measures to alleviate the problems being experienced on farm as a result of the long period of dry weather we are experiencing.

 

“We now urge Welsh Government to recognise the urgency of this situation and follow the lead others across Europe have taken.”

A Welsh Government spokesman said: “Although Wales, unlike other European countries, is not officially in a drought, we fully appreciate the significant impact the prolonged dry weather period is having on farmers and the industry.

 

“Following the dry weather summit at the Royal Welsh Show, we introduced a range of short-term measures to alleviate the pressures on farmers.

 

“We continue to work with unions and the industry on short, medium and longer term measures.”

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