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NFU Scotland Conduct Westminster Meetings as the Brexit Negotiations Ramp Up

In a week which saw the UK and EU find agreement on the key issue of the transition period, NFU Scotland attended meetings with Defra officials and Scottish MPs to discuss its views on the latest Defra Command Paper ‘Health and Harmony: The Future for Food, Farming and Environment in a Green Brexit’ and how these plans for England fit in to the Union’s vision for a new agricultural policy in Scotland after Brexit.

It is the long-standing position of NFU Scotland that whilst a UK-wide regulatory framework will be important to retain integrity of the UK internal market and common standards, thereafter all elements of future agricultural policy must remain within the hands of the devolved administrations.

At today’s meetings, NFU Scotland welcomed the fact that the UK Government’s consultation document commits to ensuring the right balance of commonality and flexibility for policies to diverge in order to meet the practical needs of the four parts of the UK.

Next week, NFU Scotland will publish a document outlining its latest thinking on the next steps to a new agricultural policy for Scotland.

Commenting on today’s meetings, Vice President Martin Kennedy said: “As the Brexit negotiations ramp up, so too does NFU Scotland’s engagement with officials and parliamentarians. Continued dialogue on the Union’s key principles of trade, labour and support is hugely important.

“Since the Union’s last visit to Westminster, the debate has taken a step forward with the publication of the Defra consultation paper, ‘Health and Harmony’ and today’s discussions were largely on the proposals within that paper and how they will shape the discussion on the future of agricultural policies in the UK.

“Whilst most of the measures proposed are for England-only, they are of significant interest as Scotland and the other devolved administrations develop their own suites of measures to support agriculture and land management after we leave the CAP.

“Next week, NFU Scotland will launch a document outlining the next steps in its thinking on a new agricultural policy for Scotland post-Brexit - founded upon the principles within its CHANGE discussion document, which was the subject of wide consultation with members at the end of 2017.

“We look forward to discussing these detailed proposals with Scottish Government and working closely with them and other stakeholders to develop the right future support settlement for Scotland after Brexit.”


Notes to the Editor

  • A picture from the meeting with Bill Grant MP, Kirstene Hair MP and Luke Graham MP is available on request from media@nfus.org.uk

Ends

Contact Douglas on 0131 472 4108

Author: Douglas Ross

Date Published:

News Article No.: 43/18


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