This event is now SOLD OUT – please consider coming to our next London show on 19th November.
Robin Grey speaks with Christopher Price, Director of Policy for the Countryside Landowners Association about farm subsidies, land value tax, GMO, Right to Roam, open data and the Land Registry, fracking and more.
There is a good series on BBC Radio 4 at the moment called ‘Against The Grain’. They are 15mins each and worth a listen.
Below are links to two of them i listened too and a few of my notes and comments
>>>>>>against the grain – farming westminster – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08bb9wk
new labour = defra – word agriculture removed from government department – upset a lot of farmers and people who lived in rural areas
90s – grain mountains and food lakes – BSE – foot and mouth – farming perceived as a problem – farmers go on a PR offensive
farming a more important sector for french politicians even though it is still relatively small 2-3% of population
UK agriculture is tiny = 0.7% GDP produced by farming even though 70% land is farmed
an EU perspective – problem with UK is voting system first past the post leads to very little coalition government so marginal votes and voices such as farmers cannot make a difference
>>>>>>against the grain – the CAP years – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08bb202
professor tim lang
1840s repealed corn laws fixing corn prices – decision made to import cheap food from the empire rather than support our own farmers = farming declined
WW1 shock can britain feed itself then 1920/30 recession again + WW2 – WTF
By 1947 never again – let’s support our farmers – subsidies = protecting farmers via productionist approach
over generously – horrific surpluses of food – export subsidies to get rid of the stuff
CAP bundle of contradictions – good vs bad
1960 70 80 bad for nature
since then = paying farmers to do some nice things whilst allowing them to be brutal
professor allan buckwell
CAP stop market intervention
change to pay farmers to provide things market wants but doesn’t pay for
CAP has kept people on the land longer – moderating or slowing rate of out flow from agricultural sector
to keep UK competing in the world commodity market you need scale no a few tens of acres
a tale of two halves
farmers given money for things they produce even if this is a disaster for nature
separating subsidies from production – environmental land management
CAP encouraged specialisation which brought problems around environmentalism and sustainability
CAP holds back the forces of consolidation and industrialisation
danish are farming mink – raised for fir – need high quality feed – dry warm nest
CAP to stabilise farmers income and prevent corporations taking over
small farmers are the lifeblood of the countryside
There are some songs from our singers circle at Oxford Real Farming Conference 2016 on the latest episode #6 of Farmerama podcast…
It includes the wonderful Ed Hamer singing the Farmer’s ABC!
Do check it out http://farmerama.co/
by Jim Crace
This is the only fiction book I have in this section at the moment and it is a gem.
Set in medieval times, the story concerns a village about to be enclosed for sheep farming.