REPRESENTATIVES from the Ulster Farmers’ Union have met with Labour Shadow Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Minister Dr David
Drew on the Martin Farm in Killeavey, Newry.
Discussions focused around Brexit and the importance of securing a suitable exit deal in order to avoid a cliff-edge scenario, which would have disastrous consequences for farm businesses and the economy.
The UFU emphasised the need for frictionless trade North/South and East/West.
Also discussed was the UK Agriculture Bill and the fact that it must include a provision to allow for long-term domestic food security, and prioritise the production of nutritious, good quality food in measurable and enforceable terms, as well as ways to encourage more young farmers into industry. The UFU also stressed that Westminster must understand that farming in Northern Ireland is different to farming in England.
Northern Ireland’s farming industry is largely based around small, family-run farm businesses and the agricultural budget allocation for the Province must be kept at the same level for the transitionary period and beyond.