More support for flooded farms announced

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The government has announced greater support to help more farm businesses recover after heavy rain and flooding across the country.

The government announcement last Friday 24 has taken on board NFU demands, increasing help for farmers and growers to get the support needed.

The scope of the Farm Recovery Fund has widened to support farms damaged by extreme rainfall and river breaches.

Defra will be writing to businesses that have experienced exceptional levels of rainfall to outline what they are entitled to receive.

Payment rates will be in bands related to size, with the amount of help available ranging from £2,895 to £25,000.

Businesses will not need to prove entitlement, as it will be based on the data analysis Defra has done.

It comes after the wettest 18 months since 1836, which left vast areas of agricultural land saturated and under water.

A recent NFU survey showed the impact this has had, with levels of farm business confidence at an all-time low.

Many arable farmers have been unable to plant crops and have lost those already in the ground, while livestock farmers have endured a difficult lambing season.

Other measures announced to improve on-farm cash flow include the second 50% instalment of delinked payments moving forward to September from December.

It has also been confirmed that members will receive the first 50% in August.

These loans will help with cashflow, supporting farm resilience and bolstering longer-term investment across UK agriculture.

Defra secretary of state Steve Barclay said that the NFU’s proposals for government-backed loans “merit detailed consideration.

NFU President Tom Bradshaw said:  “The measures announced today will not solve all the issues we’re facing on farm, but I am confident they will go some way to lifting some of the immediate strain on family farms and help farmers and growers to get back to doing what they do best – producing high quality, sustainable food for the British people.”

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