The Labour Party will cut the budget for UK farm support if it wins the next general election, according to a new policy document.

Labour’s review into food policy, which was published on Monday, states that the party also wants farm payments in the UK to have a stronger environmental focus.

“The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) provides £3bn/year in revenue support to UK farmers. Labour’s ambition is for a smaller, greener CAP that delivers better value for money,” the document reads.

Farmers in NI currently receive around £300m from the UK’s £3bn farm budget and, whilst local policymakers design specific farm schemes for NI, they depend on the budget set by the government in London.

Labour’s plans will cause concern among farm leaders, given that the party is favourite to win the next general election, which is expected later this year. The current budget for UK farm support is only guaranteed for this parliament, so it effectively runs out at the end of the 2024/2025 financial year.

The new policy review document states the Labour Party wants to “produce more food in the UK”, although details on how this will be delivered are light.

The party seems to rule out incentivising more food production through farm support payments, or by increasing the price consumers pay for food.

“We must grow more affordable food, more efficiently, waste less and with less damage to the environment,” the document reads.

The policy review has a strong emphasis on food regulation and traceability, highlighting that the Labour government set up the Food Standards Agency in the wake of the BSE crisis in 2000.

However, the document suggests food regulation was weakened by the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government after 2010 and the “horsemeat scandal” of 2013 is mentioned repeatedly in the policy review.

“The horsemeat scandal raised serious questions about the breakdown in the regulatory framework governing food,” the document states.