DEFRA issues farmer broadband warning header image

Published: 8th Jan 2014

The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has warned many farmers may be unable to access government payments if their broadband is not improved.

It released its annual report yesterday (January 7th), which warned the introduction of a digital system for delivering payments to farms as part of the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) could hit individuals who have poor or non-existent broadband services. 

DEFRA chair Anne McIntosh said: "Delivery of CAP payments to farmers is at stake."

She stressed that farmers who are unable to access online systems should still have the option of receiving the funding through paper-based methods. 

DEFRA is not the first organisation to highlight this issue, as in November the Western Morning News reported the Tenants Farmers Association was concerned about the government's plans to make CAP payment delivery digital.

The organisation's chief executive George Dunn said farmers should not be penalised for not having reliable broadband access.

Satellite broadband is ideal for bringing high-speed internet to farms.