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Discussing What Matters To Farmers

At the Dorset County Show I spent an hour meeting dairy and beef farmers and officers from the National Farmers’ Union to talk about the wide  range of issues concerning farmers to day – including the impact on small dairy farmers  of  price setting where supermarkets manipulate the price of milk as a loss leader and the impact of globalisation on farming locally. Another concern is  the potential financial impact on farms in the Frome Valley of the changing regulation of nitrates in the Poole Harbour catchment area. It’s important that the burden of previous farming practices from which  the chalk retains nitrate heavy fertiliser residue should not all be shouldered by current tenants of the land.

This was just one of what I hope will be many meetings with a range of farmers and local producers and their representatives over the next few months, getting to grips with the challenges facing those who work the land and act as custodians of so much of what makes Dorset such a special place to live.

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