The costs of welfare to UK farming businesses

The agricultural industry is facing a plethora of complex challenges today, but what will these challenges cost your farming business? We take a closer look at today’s most pressing issues across the industry, the impact on the agricultural sector, and solutions to minimise the effects in the Livetec Cost of Welfare report.


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The threats to farming continue

Challenges are certainly not a new concept to farmers. However, rarely have we seen so many events come together at once. Throughout 2020 and 2021, farmers have faced threats relating to Brexit, COVID-19, regulation updates, and tariff changes, all of which are creating major processing delays that are affecting day to day operations.

In our Cost of Welfare report, we closely examine some of today’s biggest threats:

Labour shortages: Reports suggest that there are currently around 500,000 vacancies across the UK’s food & drink sector, including agricultural workers, HGV drivers, and processing operators due to both Brexit and COVID-19.

CO2 shortages: With tariff changes increasing prices, the closure of fertiliser plants in the UK is sparking a widespread CO2 shortage. It’s estimated that weekly chicken output is down by as much as 10% as a direct result of the crisis.

Transport restrictions: Changes in Government regulation are limiting how and when animals are moved from the farm for processing. Under the latest updates, many planned journeys from November-April are likely to be cancelled.

So what will these challenges cost your business? While the financial cost – such as loss of healthy livestock and increased feed costs for keeping animals on the farm for longer – is a primary concern, farmers must also consider the welfare implications of delays.


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Understanding the concerns

Processing delays can have significant effects on animal welfare, as well as farmer welfare, employee welfare, environmental welfare, and end-consumer welfare.

Some of the concerns we raise in our Cost of Welfare report relate to:

  • On-farm overcrowding, resulting in greater stress and increased risk of disease
  • Psychological effects of poor animal welfare and financial loss on farm workers
  • Inability to meet consumer demand for fresh food, impacting UK food security
  • Increased GHG emissions and environmental effects from involuntary culling

In this report, we take a deep dive into these four areas of welfare, examining the broad impact that the cost of welfare can really have on the UK agricultural sector.


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Taking action

The good news is that farmers don’t have to sit back and watch their business struggle. Download the Livetec Cost of Welfare report to uncover leading solutions designed by our agricultural experts that can not only minimise processing delays, but also effectively and efficiently manage the welfare concerns that come from such delays.

In our Cost of Welfare report, we highlight the importance of tailored solutions such as…

  • Disease outbreak contingency planning
  • Improved biosecurity measures
  • Consultancy services
  • Emergency on-farm operations
  • Humane mobile stunning innovations

To find out how to build more robust and resilient on-farm processes that help you navigate the unique and complex challenges of farming in the post-2020 landscape, download the Livetec Cost of Welfare report HERE and protect the future of your business.