MONMOUTH Assembly Member Nick Ramsay is pressing the Welsh Government’s Deputy Minister for Farming and Food, Rebecca Evans, AM, for an urgent meeting with local farmers who are desperately concerned about the proposed introduction of the single flat rate payment.
Speaking today, Mr Ramsay said:
“I have written to the Minister after meeting a large number of farmers in my constituency and hearing how extremely unhappy they are about proposals to change the basic payment scheme.
“Their feelings are that the introduction of a flat rate single farm payment while generally benefiting unproductive upland farms would penalise the most productive lowland farmers, resulting in a reduction in production. They feel it’s simply not fair that unproductive upland farms would receive as much as good producers who are doing all the work. This shambolic situation has put farming unions in a quandary as both sides are affected, with some better off and some much worse off.
“The feeling is that if there must be a reduction in payments then it should be applied fairly across the board. The existing rates of subsidy are vital to many of my constituent farmers who have told me they are already producing on or under the cost of production.
“I hope the Minister will arrange to meet them in Cardiff as soon as possible. “Farmers feel that the Welsh Government are simply not listening to their concerns and that a lot more could be done to help the farming industry.”