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Farmers: Retirement

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 20411, tabled on 22 June 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans he has to pay farmers to retire; and what discussions he has had with the National Farmers Union on those plans.

Answered on

30 June 2021

We plan to offer farmers in England who wish to exit the industry the option of applying for a lump sum payment in 2022. By doing so, this will free up land for new entrants and those farmers who wish to expand.

We know that some farmers who wish to retire or leave the industry can find it difficult to do so and lack of finance can be one of the barriers to exit. We think that a lump sum exit scheme could help such farmers leave the industry in a planned way.

The Department regularly discusses its planned agricultural reforms with key stakeholders, such as the National Farmers’ Union, and this has included discussions about the proposed lump sum exit scheme.

We are currently consulting farmers and stakeholders on our proposed lump sum exit scheme, including the eligibility criteria that will apply https://consult.defra.gov.uk/agricultural-policy/lump-sum-and-delinked-payments-england/. The consultation runs until 11 August 2021.