Details of UK Government actions taken in response to the dangers highlighted in the Yellowhammer Report should also be published, the Farmers’ Union of Wales (FUW) has said.
‘Operation Yellowhammer - HMG Reasonable Worst Case Planning Assumptions’ was published on September 11 following a vote on Monday (September 9) in the House of Commons. The six-page report summarises the broad range of dangers that would or could accompany a no-deal Brexit, including civil unrest, road blockages, human and veterinary medicine shortages, food shortages and smuggling.
Due to unforeseen circumstances our Sustainable Farming & Our Land consultation meeting for Denbigh and Flint on Monday 16 September has been postponed until further notice. Apologies for any inconvenience caused, we will rearrange shortly.
Oherwydd amgylchiadau annisgwyl, mae ein cyfarfod ymgynghori Ffermio Cynaliadwy a'n Tir ar gyfer Dinbych a Fflint, dydd Llun 16 Medi wedi'i ohirio hyd nes y clywir yn wahanol. Ymddiheuriadau am unrhyw anghyfleustra a achosir, byddwn yn aildrefnu cyn bo hir.
Agriculture carries the highest rate of suicide above any other occupation and that’s why ahead of World Suicide Prevention day (Tuesday 10 September), the Farmers’ Union of Wales is urging those going through a tough time to seek help.
FUW President Glyn Roberts said: “Poor mental health is an issue that affects the farming community greatly and it is well known that loneliness and social isolation can lead to mental health problems.
“The FUW understands that failing to deal with poor mental wellbeing could have serious consequences and lead to the farm running inefficiently, a serious injury, relationship breakdowns, poor physical health and even worse, it could lead to suicide.”
Mr Roberts added that everyone can make a contribution in preventing suicide and believes that it is by joining together, those suffering can be better supported.
The announcement that Scottish farmers will benefit from £160 million as a top up payment from the UK Government, as well as a £51.4m boost in convergence funding, has been slammed as political game playing by the Farmers’ Union of Wales.
FUW President Glyn Roberts responded saying: “There can be absolutely no doubt that direct support, which underpins safe, top-quality food production, must be maintained to avoid causing irreparable damage to Wales and of course the UK as a whole.
“As such, we welcomed the decision to set up a review of allocations based on environmental, agricultural and socio-economic factors, and the top up of £5.2 million for Wales means that as such our budget will be maintained until 2022.
“However, the FUW has long argued that funding needs to be allocated fairly and giving Scotland an extra £160 million, could cause market distortion on an unprecedented scale and is extremely unfair on Welsh farmers.”
The Union President further pointed out that in 2017 Scottish farm businesses received an average Pillar 1 payment of £23,971, which was more than 30% higher than the UK average of £18,306, and 65% higher than the Welsh average of £14,568.(figures based on data downloaded from http://cap-payments.defra.gov.uk).
“As such, this reallocation of funding is likely to exacerbate differences between farm businesses in different nations which must compete in the same marketplace. Funding allocations like this must not be a precedent for future,” said Glyn Roberts.
The Farmers’ Union of Wales is looking forward to a busy, #farmingmatters focused Usk show, on Saturday 14 September, which is being held at the 100 acre Usk Showground near the village of Gwernesney just outside Usk.
The event, which has been held on the second Saturday in September since 1844, celebrates the very best of Monmouthshire farming and rural life.
FUW Gwent County Executive Officer Glyn Davies said: “We are really looking forward to Usk show - it is a time to show the quality of produce, a time to meet and catch up with old friends and a time to demonstrate the value of agriculture to a wider audience.
“I have no doubt that we will see many people with little or no background in agriculture who are increasingly interested in food, food production, quality produce and buying locally here at the show.
“We extend a warm welcome to them and our members to join us for a cup of tea and plenty of #farmingmatters chats.
The Farmers’ Union of Wales has renewed calls for Article 50 to be revoked to allow the UK to ‘take back control’ and deliver a smooth Brexit that does not threaten millions of livelihoods.
Following meetings with MPs and Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns in London (Tuesday, 3 September), FUW President Glyn Roberts said: “We had very constructive discussions about the contingency planning required to support farmers and farming communities in the event of the UK crashing out of the EU next month.
“But we also stressed that other options, must be considered if we are to safeguard the future of our family farms and the rural economy in Wales.
“Those who are enthusiastic about Brexit should also be realistic about the dangers of getting it wrong, and the need for an orderly withdrawal over a realistic timescale.
“The damage being done by the current strategy to businesses, our economy, our international reputation and our political parties is clear for everyone to see.”
Mr Roberts said that revoking Article 50 - a policy first agreed at an emergency meeting of the Union’s presidential team and committee chairs in mid January - must be considered as it is the only option which would take back control over the process and return us to a situation where a smooth and orderly Brexit was possible.