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Livestock farmers call for fairer return

by 5m Editor
7 February 2007, at 10:27am

UK - Livestock farmers are still struggling to secure a fair return from the market, the latest estimates of average net farm incomes has shown.

Despite the estimated increase in lowland livestock, the average net farm income is expected to remain below £7,700 per farm in 2006-07, according to Defra’s latest figures. Livestock producers in less favoured areas are set to return an average of £9,300 per farm.

Thomas Binns, NFU livestock chairman, said: “Farmers clearly are using their single farm payment to subsidise food production.

“The provisional estimates imply that the average livestock farmer and spouse received less than half the national minimum wage despite the inclusion of the single farm payment.

“The NFU national livestock board is concerned that the market has not reflected the shortfall in the true cost of production and that farm returns are unsustainable.

“These latest projections show that, even with the single farm payment, most farmers are receiving an appalling return on their investment and the need for immediate remedy is now if we are to avoid irreversible damage to the supply base.

“We will be raising our concerns at the highest levels within the supply chain and government as a priority during the first quarter of 2007,” Mr Binns said.

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5m Editor