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Latest agricultural and business news from Agri Assist and beyond

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Farming Today

  • 02/07/20 - Scrutinising the Green Recovery Fund, Nature Recovery Networks, Blueberries

    The government has announced a £40m Green Recovery Challenge Fund but Richard Benwell from Wildlife and Countryside Link tells Charlotte Smith why it's not enough. The government has also made Nature Recovery Networks a major part of its twenty-five year environment plan and reporter Bob Walker joins a tour of one of the first schemes in Nottinghamshire. For soft fruits week a pair of Somerset Blueberry growers tell Rachel Lovell why they started producing this unusual fruit. Producer: Toby Field

  • 01/07/20 - Food supply post-Covid, Build build build in the countryside, Pick your own strawberries

    Following the conclusion of the EFRA Select Committee's hearings into COVID-19 and food supply the Chair, Neil Parish MP, tells Anna Hill what the priorities for for the future. The Prime Minster has announced a building programme across the country but that also means getting rid of many of the existing planning regulations. Mark Bridgeman, President of the Country Land and Business Association gives his reaction. For soft fruits week Rebecca Rooney speaks to the owners of a huge strawberry farm near Swindon who have introduced an online ticketing system. Producer: Toby Field

  • 30/06/20 - Trade and Agriculture Commission, Sugar labelling row, Pick your own fruit

    The Department of Trade has announced a new Trade and Agriculture Commission to advise on any future trade deals which may undercut UK farmers by importing food produced to lower standards than here in the UK. Anna Hill asks Minette Batters from the National Farmers Union whether it will achieve those aims. Does a packet of sugar that carries the Union flag give the impression that it is produced from British sugar beet rather than imported sugar cane? Anna heads to her local supermarket to see what she can find out and asks Dr. Vitti Allender from Cardiff Metropolitan University what the rules are around packaging products in this way. For the second day of Farming Today soft fruits week Mariclare Carey Jones speaks to Tom and Jess Higgs to find out how their pick-your-own business is going in its second year. Producer: Toby Field

  • 29/06/20 Settlements for Roundup weedkiller cancer claims, tourism post-lockdown, soft fruits

    Bayer is to pay out nearly £9bn to settle cancer claims linked to the the Roundup weedkiller. Seaside areas are expecting an influx of visitors looking for a staycation this year and that's creating some tensions. This should have been Wimbledon week. 33 tons of strawberries destined for the tournament are now looking for new markets, but after a fraught start to the season strawberry growers are seeing increased demand for berries. Presented by Charlotte Smith and produced by Beatrice Fenton.

  • 27/06/20 - Rethink: Food and farming after coronavirus

    Today is all about radical thoughts - What should our food system look like? What sort of food should farmers grow? How should it get to us? At what price and at what impact on our environment? As part of BBC Radio's Rethink week Charlotte Smith presents contributions from Nuffield Farming scholar and Honorary Officer for International Affairs for The Nutrition Society, Barbara Bray; Distinguished Fellow at Chicago Council on Global Affairs and a visiting scholar at Stanford University in the Centre for Food Security, Ertharin Cousin; Professor of Global Health at Imperial College London, and the World Health Organisation’s Special Envoy on Covid-19, David Nabarro; Senior Fellow at the Adam Smith Institute, Tim Worstall; His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, and Chief Economist and Assistant Director-General for Economic and Social Development Department at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Maximo Terrero. Producer: Toby Field

  • 26/06/20 A royal re-thinking of food and farming with Prince Charles

    As part of BBC radio’s rethink project, Prince Charles asks whether a transformation of our food and agricultural systems could be one of the lasting legacies of coronavirus. In England the Environment Agency is working to introduce permits to reduce the environmental impact of dairy and intensive beef farms. We hear from the RSPB and the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers. Presented by Charlotte Smith and produced by Beatrice Fenton.

Agri Assist

  • In the know: Our summary of the impending changes to direct support that Brexit will bring.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: The Government announces that levels of farm debt are rising. Some fare better than others.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: Feed-in Tariff to close.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: Read our summary of the recent case of Moore v Moore that is another cautionary tale about proprietary estoppel.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: Read our summary of the recent case of Wild v Wild, which concerns whether or not an asset is owned by a partnership or an individual partner.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: The law regarding plant nurseries and national non-domestic rates is clarified.
  • In the know​​​​​​​: Read our summary of the recent case of Gee v Gee, concerning proprietary estoppel.
  • Agri Assist launches In the know​​​​​​​ to keep those working in the rural sector up to date with the latest cases and relevant issues.
  • ... as is! Our new sister website aimed at helping farms and rural businesses is here at
  • Agri Assist is born. We are delighted to launch our site dedicated to helping rural businesses in financial difficulty.