SIR, – The SNP party’s stance on EU alignment regarding farm policy is looking more ludicrous by the day, given the Dutch, the French, the Belgians, the Poles, and even the Germans, are out in force blockading their capitals, by entirely entertaining agricultural methods, enraged by the direction of EU policy, with the support of their citizens.

Calling for more conditions for less support funding in real terms, at a time of significant cost inflation is not a credible position for anyone acting in good faith.

The time has come to return the deposit on EU alignment, and more carefully consider UK alignment.

Linking environment and farming quantify that at least £1bn of additional support is required across the UK if farming is to deliver both food and environmental public goods.

The cabinet secretary tells us there is no contradiction between the two, but has not quantified how that would be achieved in Scotland, differently to the rest of the UK, yet expecting a UK budget to pay for policies that remain completely unknown, other than theoretical and arbitrary percentages, which on the gritty, thin, loose soil of a cliff edge, butters no parsnips.

Meanwhile, British policy now offers significant capital investments for traditional family farms, direct payments to the uplands at rates significantly higher than current Scottish receipts, amongst many other direct options. These have been embraced and slightly tweaked by other devolved nations, with lighter touch compliance.

Also due to budget mismanagement, the Scottish administration removed additional Bew funding, British money specifically ring-fenced and recommended for remote Scottish farms. The breeding livestock on which delivers socio-economic benefits to our local communities, for a remarkable return on capital, and many such areas are represented by members of the SNP party no less.

Scotland’s low input, extensive, less favoured farms are already amongst the most sustainable production systems imaginable, in every sense except financially, yet have suffered decadal, protracted decline in numbers of holdings, breeding herds, and people. Profitability is half that of all farm types on average. The national herd size is now below critical mass, impacting the wider food supply chain, which in the last year alone, has resulted in further supply chain consolidation. All this is at a point in history when the world is only getting hungrier.

The Scottish government voted, without legal competence yet again, objecting to the Internal Market Act (UKIMA), which is essential to our trade of both farm inputs and produce. As of last week, the UKIMA proved an inalienable feature of the resumption of devolved assembly in Northern Ireland and, therefore may now be considered as integral to continued peace on the island of Ireland, our closest agricultural trading partners.

Why is the power grab using Henry VIII's powers to remove democratic amendment and consent of the Scottish Parliament?

Will the Scottish administration publish a draft rural support plan, of this so called “framework” agriculture bill, well in advance of stage three? Or are the committees of Holyrood irrelevant to the governance of a restless rural Scotland?

William Moses, Challoch, Newton Stewart