Buy British to Show Support for Livestock Farmers Hit by Snow02 April 2013
UK - The UK's National Farmers' Union has urged the public to buy British to support livestock farmers who are continuing to battle against the extreme weather in many parts of the country.
The unusual wintry conditions have come during the peak lambing season, a key time for sheep farmers, making the situation worse.
It is thought hundreds of animals will have perished in the snow in recent days, with west Cumbria, the Pennines, the Peak District, Shropshire and north Wales all hit.
NFU livestock board chairman Charles Sercombe said it is the final straw at the end of a very tough 12 months.
"It has been a distressing and challenging time for many sheep farmers who always look forward to this time of year and it's incredibly saddening when factors out of your control ruin all of your hard work. You really expect decent weather at the end of March and I fear significant numbers of lambs will have been lost in the snow.
"We are in discussions with Defra over how to help farmers challenged by the unseasonal weather but there is no compensation available and many sheep farmers are again looking at large financial losses. That's why it is so important that consumers continue to buy British lamb in support of those farmers who've been dealing with the bad weather over the last year.
"The NFU Fodder Bank is available to help farmers who are low on supplies find feed and bedding for their animals. NFU members can take full advantage of the service to appeal for stocks or list any fodder they have to sell by logging on here.
"Finally, the industry is very grateful to the Prince's Countryside Fund which is donating £219,000 from its emergency relief fund to go to help farming organisations like RABI during the Easter period. We have also taken many calls from members of the public expressing support for the hard work that farmers are undertaking caring for animals in the snow."
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