Comments ‘understatement of the century’ - Anderson

Martina Anderson
Martina Anderson

Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson has said comments from the British government’s environment secretary on the impact of Brexit on agriculture are the understatement of the century.

Martina Anderson said: “The admission by the British government’s environment secretary, Michael Gove, that Brexit will be turbulent for farmers must surely be in line for understatement of the century.

“He warned delegates at a farming conference that the consequences will be particularly felt by smaller farms, typically family farms.

“The fact is that Brexit will be disastrous for the farming and agriculture sectors in the north where there are more smaller farms.

“It will decimate small farms and put the livelihoods of many in jeopardy.

“Of course, the Tories have shown time and time again that they don’t care about the impact of Brexit on people in the north.

“As the Irish government steps up its plans for a no deal Brexit it must ensure that the needs of the Irish agriculture sector north and south are taken into consideration.”

Responding to Michael Gove’s speech to the Oxford Farming Conference, Liberal Democrat MP Alistair Carmichael said Mr Gove is still not listening to any experts while it is clear he has forgotten the assurances he gave the farming community during the referendum.

He added: “Farmers have certainly not forgotten. To plan for their business properly, farmers need to know how much money they’ll get, what standards they need to meet and what tariffs they need to pay. All Gove and co are offering is yet further uncertainty.”