1. Wales

More time to bury dead livestock

The relaxation of laws that prevent farmers burying their livestock on their land is to be extended for a further week. Farmers called for the change to help them deal with the deaths of hundreds of animals following heavy snow.

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'Too little too late' and 'disappointing' say opposition

Opposition parties in the Assembly have claimed that the Welsh Government has been too slow to react and has not gone far enough in its response to the impact of heavy snow on livestock farming.

The Welsh Government has been slow off the mark in dealing with this disaster and while this announcement is welcome, it is too little, too late. While the Rural Affairs Minister was tucking into his Easter eggs, Welsh farmers were trying to dig frozen carcasses out of feet-deep snow. Welsh Conservatives believe that a derogation should be granted in these exceptional circumstances to allow farmers to deal with fallen stock in an efficient and practical manner.

– Shadow Minister for Rural Affairs Antoinette Sandbach AM

I share the unions' severe disappointment, however, that there is to be no programme of direct financial aid. Of course farming is a business that is exposed to risk from the elements, and that will always remain the case. However, I would urge the Minister to be in listening mode when he meets representatives of the Welsh farming unions in the next couple of days. I look forward to meeting the Minister myself in Powys later this week to discuss the severe difficulties Welsh Livestock farmers are facing as a result of the extreme weather – and to press the case for assistance

– Liberal Democrat Farming and Food spokesperson William Powell AM

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