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29 August 2017 00:00:36 |Finance,Government,Market Reports,News,NFU,Rural Life

New regulation can be more effective for farmers after Brexit, NFU says

The NFU President Meurig Raymond said he believes that new rules can 'work better while maintaining the same high standards the public expect'

The NFU President Meurig Raymond said he believes that new rules can 'work better while maintaining the same high standards the public expect'

The Government should take advantage of the opportunity Brexit presents to create a regulatory environment for farming that is "streamlined, grounded in science and respects realistic farm practices", a new report released today urges.
As MPs return to Westminster and continue work on the EU Withdrawal Bill, the NFU has laid out its vision for a regulatory environment that supports farmers, the public and the environment in the final report of its 'Vision for the Future of Farming' series.
The NFU said it strongly believes that new rules can work better while maintaining the same high standards that the public expect.
NFU President Meurig Raymond said: “Farmers recognise that regulation is a part of farming like any other business but they are often left frustrated with rules that do not always make practical sense on farm.
“Leaving the EU provides a unique opportunity to develop a regulatory environment that is better designed and effectively implemented to allow farmers to do what they do best – provide a safe and affordable supply of British food.”
'Realistic farm practices'

The NFU is calling for regulation that increases the role of science and evidence and respects 'realistic farm practices' in its design.
The farming union states regulation should take into account 'good farming practice' and membership of farm assurance schemes, and use this 'earned recognition' to reduce on-farm assessments.
It calls for better recognition over the impacts of rules on business costs and operation, and urges a more balanced application of the Precautionary Principle.
Finally, the NFU is calling for regulation that is proportional, taking into account the size of businesses.
Scientifically evidenced'
Mr Raymond added: “The NFU has long maintained that any regulation should be scientifically evidenced, it should be implemented with minimal bureaucracy, and its impact on business should be fully assessed.
“Britain’s withdrawal from the EU provides the opportunity for the UK government to embrace these positive principles, improving the competitiveness of British farm businesses while ensuring continued access for our great British produce into overseas markets.

“However, to reach this point it is crucial the Government ensures the EU Withdrawal Bill provides certainty to farmers about the rules and regulation they will be subject to in the short and medium term, so that their businesses can thrive without considerable disruption after we leave the EU.
“A system that offers farmers the best business environment to farm not only benefits food production but the countryside and rural economy as a whole.”
In March, the NFU urged the government to forge a 'productive and profitable' agriculture sector in the first of its Vision for the Future of Farming reports.
And in July, the union released a report looking into the declining number of seasonal workers coming to Britain's farms.


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