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Weekly Overview: Agricultural Organisations Call for Early Commitment to Farming Following Brexit

27 June 2016

ANALYSIS - Last week the UK held its EU referendum with the leave vote triumphant. Following the decision, farming organisations stressed that it is important that an early commitment is made to British farming.

The National Farmers' Union (NFU) President Meurig Raymond said that the organisation would campaign for the best possible access to markets in the EU and further afield, whilst ensuring that the UK is protected from imports that are produced to lower standards.

Head of the NFU’s Welsh branch, NFU Cymru, Stephen James said: “Negotiating and concluding trade agreements with the European Union and the rest of the world, for our exports, now becomes vital.

“Wales is particularly reliant on export markets and we will be looking to the UK Government to prioritise the negotiation of favourable trade agreements. Whilst doing so I would stress that it is essential that decision makers do not undermine domestic agriculture by opening the UK market to goods which do not meet our own high standards of production.”

The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and the British Veterinary Association both emphasised the importance of animal welfare in the forthcoming negotiations.

BVA President Sean Wensley said: "The UK's decision to leave the European Union will have a significant impact on matters of interest to the veterinary profession, particularly in relation to regulation, education, and workforce planning, but also in terms of animal welfare, research, surveillance, and animal movements.”

The Brexit will also impact on the agricultural sector of other countries around the world. Speaking before the vote, Irish Farmers Association (IFA) President Joe Healy commented: "Should the UK vote to leave the EU, Irish agriculture would undoubtedly suffer negative consequences, both in the short-term and the longer term."

US market analysts Steve Meyer and Len Steiner explained that despite all the various projections by economists, the reality is that no one really knows the true impact of the Brexit.

For US livestock producers, Mr Meyer and Mr Steiner believe the most important implication in the short term is what happens to the value of the US dollar and the effect this has on the relative price of US products sold overseas.

In disease news, two more cases of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea (PED) have been reported in Ontario, Canada. One affected a farrow-to-finish farm in Oxford county and the other a finisher unit in the Waterloo region.

More African Swine Fever outbreaks have also been reported, as Russia confirmed 13 new outbreaks in the west of the country. In total, 33 cases were reported in backyard farmed pigs and eight in wild boar.

Lucy Towers

Lucy Towers
News Team - Editor

After graduating from The University of Sheffield, Lucy joined 5M in 2011 as part of the News Desk team. In 2012, she was promoted to editor of TheFishSite. With previous farming experience and a love for the great outdoors, Lucy has a passion for wildlife and the environment.

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