COVID-19 support for shows considered

Representatives from local agricultural shows have been in contact with DAERA about the possibility of a COVID-19 support package being rolled out due to event cancellations.

“Departmental officials have completed an assessment of information received from show organisations and I am currently considering options for future support for this sector,” Agriculture Minister Edwin Poots said in response to a question from the UUP’s Rosemary Barton.

Welsh hill farms bought for tree planting

Areas of hill land in Wales are still being purchased by private businesses and planted with trees to offset carbon emissions, the Farmers’ Union of Wales has said.

According to the union, it receives calls from its members “on almost a weekly basis” about the distortion in the land market.

“The Welsh Government and Senedd should take urgent action to tackle this issue through some form of control mechanism,” said the organisation’s president Glyn Roberts

“When a piece of farmland is sold and planted with trees it is no longer officially available to the agricultural sector for offsetting emissions, and if someone plants trees on Welsh land and sells the carbon outside Wales then this does nothing to help Wales reduce its carbon footprint,” he said.