|"We'll be redundant next!"|
In most cases most types of farm business made a loss before the payment of SFP ( single farm payment or subsidy). They didn't make enough to pay themselves or their family work force. After the SFP , payments for conservation projects and diversification which includes holiday lets, horse livery and wind turbines a loss was turned into a small profit but still not enough for a "living wage" and re-investment. You will not read this in the Daily Mail but there are farmers who only get by because of working family tax credits.
Farmers have, historically, been capital rich but cash poor and the present situation puts English and Welsh food production in a very precarious position It must be very tempting to liquidate the capital then give in, give up and go away, turn the farm over to housing, industrial development or a banker looking for a safe haven for his bonus because he doesn't trust the banks.
Crofters generally don't have this problem being both capital poor and cash poor, lambs have always sold for less than the cost of production but it's easier than buying and maintaining a ride on mower.