Weald to Waves Logo

Farms under water

By Libby Drew - 29 March 2024

The devastating impact of this winter's persistent rains has posed significant challenges for farmers across the region. For arable farmers, the relentless wet conditions have obstructed the timely drilling of spring crops. Delays in planting not only push back the harvest but also jeopardise the ability to timely establish next year's crops, creating a cascading effect on agricultural schedules and productivity. Late-drilled spring crops frequently suffer in terms of both yields and quality, compounding the financial pressures on growers already grappling with economic uncertainty.

The situation is equally troubling in livestock farming. The sodden fields have frustrated efforts at lambing, with wet weather creating less than ideal conditions for newborn lambs. Additionally, the anticipated turnout time for cattle has been delayed, as the ground remains too wet and soil temperatures too cold for grazing. These conditions stress the animals and complicate management efforts during critical periods of the farming calendar.

As climate change continues to drive winters towards warmer and wetter conditions, the agricultural community faces increasing pressure. The UK must contemplate adaptive strategies to ensure the resilience of food production. Innovations in farm practices, natural flood management, and investment in regional markets are among the measures that may need to be considered more urgently as our weather patterns become increasingly volatile. This shift requires not only individual adaptation but also policy support to equip farmers with the tools and resources necessary to thrive under changing climatic conditions.

Suggest a post

We'd love to feature your stories and news from the corridor. Click the link below or email us at info@wealdtowaves.co.uk to get in touch

Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up with your email address to receive four seasonal newsletters and other news about Weald to Waves.