The rural affairs secretary in Wales has issued a written statement on future farm support in the country and announced the creation of ‘ministerial roundtable’.

Huw Irranca Davies said there has been a seven-year conversation to design a future farming support scheme that works for Wales and underlined his commitment to listening to and working with the sector.

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The minister said an update will be provided in mid-May, adding that economies across the world are having to confront tough decisions to ensure that the action needed to protect the future of our planet is taken in a way that delivers a just transition for communities everywhere.

Turning to the new ministerial roundtable, Mr Irranca Davies said: “One of the first tasks of the SFS Ministerial Roundtable will be to look at any further and alternative proposals to achieve additional carbon sequestration within the SFS.

“The Farming Unions and other stakeholders believe the Scheme should look beyond the existing Actions, such as additional tree planting, which this group will now consider.”

The minister said he expected those taking part in the work to focus on evidence associated with actions to support additional carbon sequestration and the scale of opportunity in Wales.

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He said the exercise will be considered by the SFS Ministerial Roundtable and ultimately support the decisions being made on scheme’s introduction.

Mr Irranca Davies concluded: “The announcement today is critical in demonstrating the steps we will take to work in partnership to finalise a Scheme that works long-term. Together we can create a future where our farmers produce the very best of Welsh food to the highest standards, while safeguarding our precious environment, underpinning our rural communities and addressing the urgency of the climate and nature emergency.”