Farming and food production and development in the Shropshire Hills Environmentally Sensitive Area, 1997-2008
Tate, G. and Park, J. (2010) Farming and food production and development in the Shropshire Hills Environmentally Sensitive Area, 1997-2008. Journal of Farm Management, 13 (11). pp. 779-788. ISSN 0014-8059
European agricultural and environmental policy has evolved considerably over the last 15 years. In this paper the changes in farm businesses in an Environmentally Sensitive Area in England are evaluated based on two surveys with the same farmers at the start and end of this period. The rate of participation in the environmental scheme had increased significantly at a time when Government led goals in this area had developed and become more output focussed. A combination of policy, market and animal health status changes had encouraged a number to leave cattle production, and though remaining with stock and grass they had decided against any extensive development in the direction of pluriactivity – with or without Government encouragement. This left the future of this group in some uncertainty given that two significant forms of financial support, the environmental scheme and the Hill Farm Allowance, were due to close.