The NFU is urging the Chancellor of the Exchequer to be especially sensitive to the impact of the Budget on the farming community while they are facing the catastrophe of foot and mouth disease.

NFU President Ben Gill said: “Farmers are on the edge at the moment – scared, frustrated and anxious. Anything the Chancellor announces next week which adds to their burden could tip them over the edge.”

The planned pesticides tax and the recently introduced climate change levy both threaten to substantially increase the industry’s costs while not achieving their environmental objectives.

High fuel taxes, which hit everyone in the countryside, and an aggregates tax which would increase the cost of quarried stone used to build farm tracks, also have the potential to add to farmers’ bills.

Mr Gill said: “Every year at this time we make contact with Gordon Brown, setting out what we want to see from his Budget. But this year we are in a uniquely critical situation.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

“There are so many farmers out there who will be wondering over the coming days: “could foot and mouth hit my farm next?” They will be fearfully awaiting next week’s Budget to see what more could be thrown at them.”

He said: “We have been in lengthy negotiations with Government to provide alternative voluntary measures to the pesticides tax. We believe these proposed measures are credible and have a far greater potential to deliver environment benefits than a bureaucratic, costly and unfocussed tax.”

He added: “The NFU is still trying to work out how driving pig, poultry and horticultural businesses out of business with the climate change levy will stop global warming – other countries will soon step in to fill the gap and will use just as much fuel as us. But then they will use more fuel to send their produce to us.

“Anything other than a complete exemption for agriculture and horticulture, as elsewhere in the EU, would be sheer madness.”

The NFU is also calling for capital allowances for plant and machinery to counteract the fall in investment in agriculture as well as a scheme to enable farmers to write off new purchases of milk quota over seven years for tax purposes.
Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this document, the NFU cannot accept liability for errors and omissions.  This information should not be regarded as constituting legal advice, and should therefore not be relied upon as such.  NFU©