NFU calls on banks for continued support for farmers

The NFU has explained the impact of Brexit on farming businesses and emphasised the need for continued support and certainty to representatives at the NFU’s Banking Forum meeting.

The meeting, which took place at its Stoneleigh HQ, was chaired by NFU resident Meurig Raymond and hosted bankers from HSBC, Barclays, Lloyds, RBS-NatWest and Clydesdale.

NFU economist Anand Dossa and research manager David Clifford gave their insight into the current state of the UK agriculture based on member surveys and market intelligence.

Mr Raymond said: “The British farming industry is currently dealing with issues such as rising costs and against a backdrop of both political and economic uncertainty as we head into the new year.

“With all the major banks around the table, today was an excellent opportunity to help create and maintain that high level of understanding of the farming industry. This understanding, and the financial support, will be needed by farmers as they face the challenges ahead.”

Oliver McEntyre, national agricultural strategy director at Barclays, said: “Farming is the cornerstone of the rural economy and infrastructure, providing food security, jobs, a rural economic foundation and a farmed environment which benefits bio-diversity and tourism.

“British farmers are as resilient as they are versatile, which means the industry is in a good position to utilise agri-tech innovations to improve efficiency in core production, while providing a great base for diversification into commercial or tourism property, adding value to core products, rural attractions and energy.”

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