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Helping farmers through 'a tough time'

Published: 8 Sep 2015 14:36

Rural Affairs Secretary comments on latest farm debt statistics.

Commenting on the latest results from the 2015 Survey of Bank Advances to Scottish Agriculture, which show farm debt levels continue to rise in Scotland, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment Richard Lochhead said:

"There is no doubt that farmers are going through a tough time at the moment due to volatile market conditions compounded by the recent poor weather conditions. However, these statistics – which show that banks are still lending to farmers - suggest their continuing confidence in this sector.

"Ministers are redoubling their efforts to help our farmers get through the current challenges to brighter times. For example, the Scottish Government is working flat out to be able to start making Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) payments before the end of this year, and will keep the industry updated on the likely timescale given the implications for their cash flows. I am also pressing my UK colleagues to agree urgently a new Fair Framework for Farming, to help farmers secure a better deal from supermarkets and the food industry which collectively sell almost £197 billion worth of food and drink every year."