The loss of vital plant protection products (PPPs), currently under threat from within the European parliament (EP), could cut UK farming profits by 36% according to a new report, commissioned by the NFU, the Agricultural Industries Federation and Crop Protection Association.
Carried out by farm business consultants, Andersons, the 67-page report reaches the conclusion that the future banning of important PPPs’ would reduce the gross value added of UK agriculture, including horticulture, by £1.6 billion a year.
The report is the latest step in a long-running campaign by the NFU to focus attention on the rising EP threat to PPPs and the serious economic impact the banning of such products would have on the whole industry.
“We have been warning that in the lifetime of the current EP, we face significant threats to PPPs,” said NFU vice president, Guy Smith. “This important and timely report has confirmed and added clarity to the negative impacts that losses and restrictions on PPPs would have on UK food production, on farming and throughout the supply chain.
“It is absolutely essential that farmers have regulation that is risk-based and that it follows sound science to ensure the farming sector keeps growing and contributing to the £97 billion UK food and drink industry. For this to happen we need government at both UK and EU level to put British food production at the heart of policy-making across all government departments.”
No area of UK agriculture would escape the impact of losing protection products, according to the report, including the cost of feed for livestock farmers, which is projected to rise by 2.5%, solely as a result of significant PPPs being banned.