HC Deb 11 June 2002 vol 386 cc1124-5W
Mr. Todd

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to rationalise the main funding schemes in the uplands to provide a simplified system of support for farmers in these areas. [59705]

Mr. Morley

The Policy Commission on the Future of Farming and Food recommended that the long-term aim for less favoured area support should be an integrated tiered payment scheme reflecting environmental and social benefits, actual cost of landscape, wildlife and access maintenance and the economic difficulties of traditional hill farming. The Government will take full account of this recommendation in reviewing the hill farm allowance and the current agri-environment schemes. In addition, plans are being drawn up for a small farmers scheme which will provide a simplified claims procedure for small farmers in the uplands and lowlands.