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The biggest change in farming policy for a generation will soon become law, as the Agriculture Bill heads to the House of Lords after it successfully passed its third reading in the House of Commons. It is now on track to become law this summer.

The Bill gives assurances to protect UK food production standards from lower standard imports which had caused much concern among farmers and growers. David Kinnersley, Partner and Head of Agribusiness, said the Bill now goes to the House of Lords to be debated largely unchanged.

“It was vital the Agricultural Bill protected the high standard of UK farming for this generation and future generations,” he said.

“Environment Minister Victoria Prentis had warned of “unintended consequences” of amending the bill and insisted all EU import standards will be converted into domestic law by the end of the December 2020 transition period. The Bill goes forward to the House of Lords for consideration largely unchanged including the timetable to reduce direct subsidies and to introduce public money for public goods via the Environmental Land Management scheme.

“This is good news for environmental, food safety and animal welfare standards in the UK and I’m glad we’re another step further towards this becoming enshrined in law. The Bill sets out for the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs Secretary of State to put forward a five-year plan which is important because we have had ten Secretaries of States in the last 12 years.

“This underlines the UK’s commitment to our food production and security and all the lobbying will have been worthwhile when it becomes law.”