Surprise! The NFU Is Complaining About Gove’s Agriculture Subsidies


This was always going to be an outcome of Brexit, the National Farmers’ Union whining about “Oi, Where’s Our Money?”. The correct answer to this is as we’ve mentioned before:

We have an alternative policy framework to suggest. Let’s just not have a policy. No subsidies, no payments, no department, no Minister, nothing, nowt, zippedy dooh dah. The New Zealand option. You’ve had it good for a century or more now there’s yer bike and have a nice ride.

We would not swear that this is true but we have heard that it is so – British farming has long passed Parkinson’s Event Horizon. There are now more bureaucrats “managing” farming than there are farmers farming. Let’s not pay the farmers anything and thus we don’t need the bureaucrats paying it – a double saving. Instead of £2 to £3 billion a year in taxes going to the farmers, plus whatever the amount again to pay it to them, we could just keep that what, £5 billion? And go and buy food from whomever.

Sounds like a plan really and we recommend it to all. Let’s use Brexit to right some of the wrongs of our current system. One of those wrongs being the incessant whining and demands for bribery from the farming sector.

The correct design of the new domestic agriculture policy is that there isn’t one. And nor is there any funding for either it or its absence. In short Meurig, go away.

That simple statement though isn’t how the political game is played. There has to be a lot of back and forth and shouting first:

‘Massive error’: farmers say post-Brexit funding plan risks food scares
Gove’s agriculture bill prioritises environmental issues over food production, says head of NFU

But we’ve not got a problem with food supplies. We’ve only a problem – if it is one at all – with preserving the British landscape, itself the product of a couple of millennia of farming. So, Gove’s point that we’re going to move away from subsidising farming to subsidising that environmental upkeep is at least a small step in the right direction. And of course that’s exactly what the NFU is complaining about. What do you mean we’ll stop getting money for just farming?

Minette Batters, president of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), said: “To put an agriculture bill out there before we know the terms of trade with other nations is extraordinary.”

“You have to ask the question: who will be producing our food?” she said. “Looking to the rest of the world to shore up what we do seems a massive error.”

Well, given that that rest of the world can produce many food items better and cheaper than we can it sounds like an excellent idea really.

But here’s what really happening. The farmers are whining about potentially getting less of our money each year. And our correct response is yes, that’s correct, you will. Toughie, a real toughie but that’s the way it’s gonna be.

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