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WORD ON THE GROUND: As spring blooms and the EU elections pass, Dowsdale farmer Ian Stancer decides that the world's gone mad!

As I write the dust settles on perhaps the most futile election ever held within our boundaries... a charade to give people a crude way of collective comment on Brexit, or lack of it.

The news pundits speculate that Mrs May will abdicate or indicate a timescale to departure in the morning (Editor: this was written just hours before she quit!) and the chaos continues to unfold. Please stop the runaway train, I want to get off.

What a relief it is to see spring emerge in all its glory, proving that life goes on and we are now full speed ahead towards harvest, with some useful rainfall at last and copious sunshine between showers.

Ian Stancer (11071626)
Ian Stancer (11071626)

The rain came too late for some oilseed rape crops on thirsty soils and many farmers are seriously contemplating dropping the crop altogether next season. The irony is that the crop came to prominence around the start of the EEC project - and legislation devised by clumsy politics rather than science is hastening its demise as the EC fragments.

The latest farce over licensing of “prolific pigeon” shooting has proven yet again that well-meaning trendy thinking on this small detail in the environment could hasten the replacement of local vegetable oil with palm oil grown at the expense of our rare ginger ape relatives in the diminishing jungles of South America.

This follows hot on the heels of the ban on neonicotinoid seed dressings for rape because of a theoretical danger to bees, hastening the decline of this amazingly good early spring food source for bees. The world’s gone mad but thank goodness for May blossom, nobody can vote that away.

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