Gove's broken Brexit promise could be end of British family farm
The Liberal Democrats have accused Michael Gove of "breaking a Brexit promise," after he set out plans to cut subsidies for farmers unless they meet certain criteria.
It comes despite a pledge made by Vote Leave during the referendum campaign, signed by ministers including Michael Gove, which stated that farmers and other recipients of EU funding would continue to receive payments after a Leave vote.
Michael Gove's speech also failed once to mention the single market and potential tariffs, a crucial issue for British farmers who export around £11bn of agricultural goods to the EU each year.
Former Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron commented:
"Michael Gove promised to maintain payments for farmers, now he's breaking that Brexit promise and the chickens are coming home to roost.
“This speech does nothing to address the huge uncertainty farmers face over the long-term viability of their businesses.
“Gove has glossed over the crucial issue of whether farmers will be hit with tariffs when selling to customers in Europe.
"If high tariffs and lower subsidies put small farmers out of business, it will be the end of the family farm as we know it.
“The bottom line is that the best way to protect British farmers is to defend our membership of the single market.”