The aim of this project is to assess the awareness of farmers of the key factors relating to the proposed changes in UK farm policy, and to assess and inform the extent to which farmers and growers are adapting their farming businesses to the changes in UK agricultural and environmental policy.
The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) is a levy funded, independent organisation which plays a pivotal role in improving farm business efficiency and competitiveness. Under the new English agricultural policy, direct payments will be phased out from 2021 until 2027 with no direct payments from 2028 onwards. The Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) will aim to reward farmers for meeting objectives that benefit the environment and the first pilot of this scheme is due to begin in October 2021. The SFI has been developed following a set of ‘tests and trials’ which started in 2018. AHDB has a responsibility to get farmers and growers ready for the impending policy change and help them not only survive but thrive.
The objectives of the project are to:
Qualitative in-depth semi-structured interviews will be conducted with farmers representative of the five production sectors (i.e. beef, sheep, pork, dairy, cereals and oilseeds) across a range of farm sizes, geographical locations and land types. Thematic content analysis will be undertaken for qualitative information in relation to attitudes and plans. This will be supplemented with a relevant cash flow analysis based on financial information that is collected. These will then lead to fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) on factors affecting farmers' decision making. They will enable us to develop a typology of different groups of farmers so that more targeted support can be provided to each group and the outcomes can be more easily applied to AHDB’s modelled typical farms.
Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board
Harper Adams University