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NFFN Cymru Consultation Response: Priorities for the Senedd’s Economy, Trade and Rural Affairs Committee

What is the consultation?

The Economy, Trade, and Rural Affairs Committee has been set up by the Senedd to look at policy and legislation, and to hold the Welsh Government to account in specific areas. These areas include business, economic development, skills, international trade, agriculture, fisheries and food. The Committee consulted with stakeholders in order help inform the Committee’s decisions on what its main priorities should be during the Sixth Senedd (2021-2026). 

Why should nature-friendly farming be concerned?

Nature-friendly farming plays an integral part in supporting vibrant rural communities and economies, whilst producing plentiful healthy sustainable food and improving public health. Furthermore, farming with nature can be the most profitable way of producing food; the Maximum Sustainable Output approach, which encourages farmers to operate within the natural carrying capacity of their land can be a route to increasing farm business profitability, thus creating more resilient rural economies and communities. A shift towards more nature and climate-friendly farming approaches will also help tackle the climate and nature crises – arguably the biggest threat facing agriculture. 

Put simply, nature-friendly farming offers countless benefits for those areas that sit under the Committee’s remit. As such, it’s important that we raise the profile of nature-friendly farming amongst the Committee’s members.    

What are the NFFN’s key recommendations?

We urge the Economy, Trade, and Rural Affairs Committee to prioritize the following key areas.

  • The Wales Agriculture Bill and proposed Sustainable Farming Scheme
  • The proposed Community Food Strategy
  • Tree Planting and Carbon Offsetting
  • National Minimum Standards for Agriculture 
  • International Trade

Nature-friendly farming has a big role to play in ensuring a Green Recovery following Covid-19. It can help improve public health, rural economies and communities as well as underpin food security. Farmers are key to addressing these issues, and urgent policy support is needed to take nature-friendly farming to scale. 

What’s next?

We sincerely hope the Committee understands the importance of nature-friendly farming and its relevance to the Committees work areas. We look forward to working closely with Economy, Trade, and Rural Affairs Committee over the term of the sixth Senedd.

Read our consultation response in English and Welsh