Wednesday 14 July 2021 8:23 am

Prince Charles warns small family farms must survive for an environmentally friendly future

The Prince of Wales has called for small family-run firms to be at the heart of attempts to go green.

In an essay for BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, the heir to the throne warned letting family-run farms go to the wall would break “the backbone of Britain’s rural communities,” and said the “heart will be ripped out of the British countryside if small, family businesses are allowed to go out of business.”

The warning comes just before the National Food Strategy is to be published tomorrow, the first major review aimed at exploring the connections between food production and the environment in more than 70 years.

“We must put nature back at the heart of the equation”, he urged.

Farmers have been battered in recent years by Brexit trading restrictions and harsh weather conditions.

“How we produce food has a direct impact on the Earth’s capacity to sustain us, which has a direct impact on human health and economic prosperity,” the Royal said.

Support from the government will be given to farmers to produce high quality food in a sustainable way, according to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

A spokesperson for the department says, “Our new system will be centred around incentivising sustainable farming practices alongside profitable food production and rewarding farmers for producing public goods such as better air and water quality, protecting wildlife and soil health.”