If you have some knowledge of rural affairs I expect you think this article will be about the iniquities of the Australian trade deal, agreed in foolhardy haste by a Westminster government desperately trying to validate Brexit economically. Or perhaps you’ll be expecting a diatribe about the incompatibility between Welsh rural life relative to that of England. Or even something examining the cultural differences in Wales when compared with other parts of the UK.
Sorry to disappoint. These and many other issues are certainly valid. There’s plenty to discuss in terms of the future of rural Wales and the potential offered by Independence but that is not the fundamental reason why every single farmer in Wales should desire Independence instinctively and wholeheartedly.
Let’s paint a picture.
Farmers love their land, they always have a deep affinity for it. Whether they have a multi generation family farm or have somehow managed to build a farm business and acquire land from nothing. It is the very nature of farming to care, to cherish and to improve that which you have. This needs long term planning, an often innate conservatism and an understanding of their own holdings which only comes with time and legacy.
So here we are, with our small but beautiful farm. Full of potential but needing a lot of work.
Unfortunately, there’s a farm 20 times larger right next door. Worse yet, the farmer next door effectively controls around 80% of everything we can do on our farm.
They also collect around 90% of the proceeds of everything we produce on our farm,
They don’t give us an accurate tally of how much this generates for them.
They spend this according to the priorities of their huge farm next door.
Then, ‘generously’, give us money to run our agricultural operations. This they do whimsically, with rules they write themselves.
They stop us investing in improving our farm, its infrastructure and our future.
They probably do love and cherish their own farm, in their own way, but they definitely don’t care for ours.
No farmer would, or should, ever allow the farm next door to set their priorities for their holdings, their livestock, their crops.
This is why every Welsh farmer should stand tall for an Independent Wales.