Food v Wildlife v Trees

Today’s Western Mail Country and Farming section highlights the acrimonious debate over the post-Brexit future of the Welsh countryside. Wildlife groups have generally welcomed the Government plans to stop direct subsidies and to pay farmers for ‘public goods’ such as habitat improvement. Farming groups want the retention of some direct support for food production, their key role, and resent the implication that many farms can only be viable with new roles. They are suspicious that a partnership approach will be led by environmental interests. Plans to greatly increase tree-planting at the expense of food production, to lower carbon emissions, are a further concern – on a day when an IPCC man said that his top priority would be that we stop eating meat.