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We will not gamble with the future of agriculture and will support farmers in these uncertain times – First Minister

The Welsh Government will not gamble with the future of agriculture and will continue to support farmers beyond Brexit, First Minister Mark Drakeford and Rural Affairs Minister Lesley Griffiths will say as they visit the summer showgrounds across Wales this week.

In July, the Welsh Government published proposals for farm support after the UK leaves the EU. The new Sustainable Farm Scheme will provide farmers with a stable income stream, reward them for environmental outcomes and protect long term food producing capacity and the environment for future generations.

The First Minister and Minister will discuss the proposals with farmers, unions and other partners at the Pembrokeshire Show on Tuesday and at the Anglesey Show on Wednesday.  

They will also discuss the increasing threat of the UK Government taking the country out of the European Union on 31 October without a deal and outline what the Welsh Government is doing to help the sector prepare for this.

Rural Affairs Minister Lesley Griffiths will also visit the Denbigh and Flint Show on Thursday.

Speaking ahead of the shows, First Minister Mark Drakeford said:  

It is clear the UK Government is recklessly careering towards a no deal Brexit and is oblivious to the devastating impact this would have, particularly in Wales.  

Crashing out of the EU would be catastrophic for our agriculture sector and for our rural communities – not just in Pembrokeshire, Anglesey, Denbigh and Flint but right across Wales.  

Taking no deal off the table is entirely in the UK Government’s hands – it must change course immediately to avoid this self-inflicted and potentially irreversible damage.

The First Minister added:

We will not gamble with the future of agriculture in Wales. We are committed to doing everything we can to secure a strong future for the sector.  

Our proposals for a new Sustainable Farm Scheme will provide security to farmers by providing them with a stable income stream post-Brexit. The scheme will also help us meet some of the biggest challenges we face today, such as climate change, by rewarding farmers for environmental outcomes.  

I look forward to discussing our proposals and hearing people’s views at the shows this week.

Rural Affairs Minister Lesley Griffiths said:  

We want to see a sustainable future for Welsh agriculture and our environment. Our proposals for a new Sustainable Farm Scheme will do just that.

But we cannot do this alone – we want to work with farmers to design the scheme together to ensure it works on the ground. The summer shows provide us with a great opportunity to discuss our plans and hear people’s views.

This is a genuine consultation which runs until 30 October. I would encourage anyone with an interest in ensuring farming has a sustainable future post-Brexit to get involved and share their views.

Revised proposals for supporting Welsh farmers after Brexit

Channel website: http://gov.wales

Original article link: https://gov.wales/we-will-not-gamble-future-agriculture-and-will-support-farmers-these-uncertain-times-first-minister

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