Lincolnshire has the third highest rate of agricultural crime in the UK, with almost £2million worth of insurance claims by farmers last year.
However, new figures from NFU Mutual reveal that agri-crime fell by almost a fifth nationally from 2011.
Theft of equipment, vehicles and livestock cost an estimated £42.3million across the UK during 2012, a reduction of 19.7 per cent year on year. In Lincolnshire, a total of £1.8million worth of claims were made by farmers affected by agri-crime.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Lincolnshire Alan Hardwick – in Spalding’s Tulip Market last Tuesday recruiting new PCSOs – said rural crime was hugely important in a county like Lincolnshire.
He said: “We are doing everything that’s possible to mitigate for the effects of it. We know it exists and that it’s a problem but we have had some successes with some of our operations.”
The NFU Mutual report showed agricultural machinery was the main target of the thieves, along with tools and fuels, such as heating oil and red diesel.
Tim Price, of NFU Mutual, said Lincolnshire had borne the brunt of “an explosion in agricultural crime” over the last few years.
He said: “This problem came from nowhere and after years of sharp rises we have seen a fall in 2012.
“So there is some good news that the efforts of farmers and police are beginning to work.”