George Osborne has listened to British farmers and brought in a new measure to help them deal with devastating market forces.
In his ?#Budget2015 today he pledged to allow farmers to average incomes for tax purposes over five years - making it easier to get through the bad times as well as the good.
This was one of our top ten asks in our 2015 manifesto.
NFU President Meurig Raymond said: “We are very pleased that Mr Osborne said that he had listened to the arguments by the NFU and will allow farmers to average their incomes over five years. As he mentioned in his speech, farmers are increasingly facing a volatile marketplace and this will enable them to manage the impacts of this.
“News that the annual investment allowance will be addressed in his Autumn Statement is also welcome. As he mentions, £25,000 is not an acceptable level which would encourage on-farm investment and we will await further announcements with interest.
“The NFU also believes the changes to the ISA system will allow more flexibility in accessing funds without losing the benefits of tax relief; and that our members who supply the drinks industry will also welcome a cut in alcohol duty for cider, beer and spirits.
"We will also await further detail on how the changes affecting self-assessment tax forms will affect our farmers and growers, particularly given that access to reasonable broadband is an issue for many.
“While we appreciate the need to roll out ultra-fast broadband of up to 100 Mbps throughout the UK, we must not forget those rural communities who have yet to reap the benefits of a decent speed for broadband and might only get a basic legal entitlement of 5 Mbps and subsidised satellite services.
“Like most motorists in the UK, rural communities will also be pleased to see that fuel duty will not rise this year.”
A full NFU briefing on Mr Osborne’s speech, and its possible effect on agriculture, will appear online soon.