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Back Food Farming Farming Regulation: Cut red tape but not at the expense of the environment

Farming Regulation: Cut red tape but not at the expense of the environment


The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) today warns that proposals to reform farming regulations need to be carefully considered by the Government before any changes are made to ensure they don’t end up damaging our countryside.

The Farming Regulation Task Force report launched today makes 215 recommendations for changing or abolishing regulations that affect the farming and food industries.

While many environmental regulations such as those that protect hedgerows have emerged unscathed from the review, other proposals to change planning legislation risk damaging the character of our landscapes.

CPRE welcomes some of the proposed changes such as finding a way to bring polytunnels into the planning system. But the potential effects of other proposals on establishing village greens and allowing other agricultural developments, including allowing permanent buildings for seasonal workers without proper planning controls are ill considered.

Ian Woodhurst, CPRE’s Senior Farming Campaigner, says: "We all agree that unnecessary paperwork does nothing for farmers or the environment. We are pleased that the Task Force has given a lot of thought to changing the processes for administering regulation to reduce the burden on farmers. But we’re concerned about the cumulative effect of all the proposed changes to planning legislation on the character of our landscapes.

"Farmers need to be trusted to do the right thing for the environment but safeguards are vital. We need a strong planning system that can continue to protect the countryside from damaging proposals."