News of farmers’ 13 per cent pay rise discredited

Farm incomes fluctuate with the price of commodities.
Farm incomes fluctuate with the price of commodities.

Whaplode Drove farmer Ian Stancer has put news reports of farmers enjoying the biggest pay rises of all workers last year into perspective.

Government figures show that farmers enjoyed an increase of more than 10 per cent in their annual wage last year.

While most workers saw wages outstripped by rising living costs, the figures show that farmers earned 13 per cent more at the end of 2013 than in January.

However, Ian says: “Farm income is up and down like a yo-yo. It fluctuates with the price of commodities and the weather so if you have an increase one year you will have a decrease the next. You just never know because it is unpredictable.

“There may have been a ten per cent increase on paper, but it may be down next year. The previous year was the summer when we had all the rain and what have you, so if they have had a better year last year, they deserve it.”

The figures show 2013 reversed 2012’s losses to return to 2011 levels.