Leaving the EU creates a once in a generation opportunity to design a domestic agricultural policy that will stand the test of time; bringing in innovative new ideas to support investment in healthy, sustainable British food production and do much better for farming, the environment and animal welfare.
The Government proposes to move to a system of paying farmers public money for public goods. The principal public good it anticipates the system promoting is environmental enhancement, but the Agriculture Bill also provides for financial assistance to be granted to promote "supporting public access to and enjoyment of the countryside, farmland or woodland and better understanding of the environment."
Ministers have consulted widely with farmers and others and I hope that you and Ramblers were able to participate in this exercise and make your views heard.
Outside the Common Agricultural Policy, we will have an opportunity to use public money to reward environmentally responsible land use, as well as maintaining and enhancing high standards of animal welfare. I am convinced that we will make the very most of this opportunity and ensure that our best days as a food and farming nation lie ahead of us.