Letter: Farms must adapt

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Farms must adapt

Sir: Farmers must adapt to survive, as do other businesses in the free market. Paying farmers not to grow crops leads to a park-keeping approach which most farmers do not want. As Duff Hart-Davis describes, history has given examples of farmers walking off the land ("The land that lies ahead", 17 October).

Low food prices, resulting in an uneconomic return to local farmers, are due in part to the large-scale farms. Even these are heavily subsidised.

Why don't farmers encourage the removal of subsidises, invite diversification and grow produce which will sell for an acceptable return. We townspeople will pay over pounds 7 for a 500ml bottle of olive oil and cannot get organic milk delivered to the door.


London N19