Farmers reacted with anger to Boris Johnson’s plans to rewild swathes of the UK’s arable and pasture land claiming swapping fields of cows, sheep and pigs for trees and bogs, which will put British food production at risk.
The Government’s £2.4 billion per year plan to replace the European Union’s common agricultural policy, called the ‘Sustainable Farming Incentive’, will be launched by Environment Secretary George Eustice at the Oxford Farming Conference.
And at its heart landowners will be paid to plant trees and restore wetlands and peat on 741,000 acres of land under the largest farming reforms in 50 years. The taxpayer will finance up to 15 large nature reserve projects of up to 12,000 acres each across the United Kingdom and thousands of smaller projects over 20 years.
It came days after Ed Sheeran announced his own plans to buy farmland to plant as many trees as possible to offset his considerable carbon footprint after years of worldwide tours and jet setting.
Farmers have said that Boris Johnson has become obsessed with rewilding, branding rubbish, and putting it above food security, which has been harmed by Brexit and the COVID pandemic.
Jono Dixon, a farmer in East Yorkshire whose family have grown wheat on the land since 1857, said that he was sick to death of all this tree planting rewilding mumbo jumbo malarkey, and that they should be allowed to produce, and that they should be left alone to do what they do best.
He told a newspaper outlet that planting trees on a mass scale on good fertile farmland growing cereals, vegetables and other palatable crops was quite simply absurd and that in his opinion it shouldn’t happen.
He said that as custodians of the countryside, farmers know how to work the land and that they monitor the wildlife and they normally look after what’s precious and that’s their daily surroundings, and he said that they appear to be surrounded by a bunch of complete and utter imbeciles who believe they know everything but really know nowt at all.
Boris Johnson’s preoccupation with rewilding has been blamed by some farmers on the Prime Minister’s father Stanley Johnson, his wife Carrie Johnson, who are advising the Government. The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs insists that projects won’t go ahead if food production is threatened.
Jono Dixon said the people around Boris Johnson are dangerous, adding that Ed Sheeran and other millionaire non-farmers buying up land for conservation are getting into something they know nothing about.
This a Government who emphatically blah blah’s about climate change and then systematically tears up the greenbelt land for huge housing estates and changes village life forever, and all this is really about is a greedy immoral government that go for short term profit and they’re selling our country from under our feet.
There was a good deal of boglands and flood plains that were ploughed up in order to attract EU subsidies and food was not generally grown in these areas, they just had to be agriculturally ready, but it exacerbated flooding and decimated habitats. We need our flood plains and the best way to secure them is to pay farmers to maintain them.
But Government wants to take everything from you. Health, food, energy, you name it and if they do, the people will be totally dependent on them.
We need to grow much more of our own food and not only should have COVID have taught us this, but it’s more environmentally friendly to not have food that’s been produced a long way away and that has had to travel and be stored before it gets to our table.
It helps our economy to have farmers in this country successfully producing but instead, they’re supported less and less by the government.
The countryside needs to be protected from development, but my worry is that Boris Johnson, who’s already attempted to introduce a planning policy for developers to build over our green spaces with ease and does nothing to prevent mass immigration is probably the biggest menace to our countryside and thinking that having a few more rewilding sites will compensate for the developments happening around the country already destroying our environment, and rewilding woodland and non-native trees, non-diverse planting shows they really don’t care or understand what they’re doing.