Agriculture (Wales) Bill - Bill Summary

Published 02/02/2023   |   Last Updated 02/02/2023   |   Reading Time minutes

The Agriculture (Wales) Bill is momentous - for the Senedd and for Wales.

For the first time the Senedd is considering legislation to introduce a ‘made in Wales’ agricultural policy. It has implications for Welsh farmers, the environment and Wales’ economy and culture.

Anticipated since the outcome of the 2016 EU referendum, this Bill arrives in the midst of several challenges: the climate and nature emergencies, inflation, rise in the cost of living, the Ukraine war, food shortages and trade disruption.

So getting land management in Wales right, is crucial. Given agricultural land covers around 90% of Welsh land, it’s high stakes for the Senedd.

Our Bill Summary provides detail on the Bill and the Senedd committees’ scrutiny during Stage 1, ahead of the Plenary debate on 7 February 2022.

Our infographic below provides a tool to understand what the Bill does.

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Section 1

Section 1 establishes four Sustainable Land Management (SLM) objectives:

  • to produce food and other goods in a sustainable manner;
  • to mitigate and adapt to climate change;
  • to maintain and enhance the resilience of ecosystems and the benefits they provide; and
  • to conserve and enhance the countryside and cultural resources and promote public access to and engagement with them, and to sustain the Welsh language and promote and facilitate its use.

Article by Katy Orford and Elfyn Henderson, Senedd Research, Welsh Parliament