The 2015 Budget gave a welcome relief to hard-pressed farmers, said Alan Reid, the MP for Argyll and Bute. Farmers will now be allowed to average their profits over five years for tax purposes. "During the House of Commons debate on the dairy industry, I had called for farmers to be allowed to average their profits for income tax purposes over several years to make it easier for them to cope with a mixture of good and bad years," said Mr Reid.
"By the very nature of the industry, farmers can have volatile profits. Uncontrollable factors such as weather, fluctuating product prices as seen with milk, and outbreaks of disease can mean they make losses one year and profits the next," he said.
"By averaging their profits over five years, they can offset losses during the bad years against tax in the good years. This reflects the importance of an efficient, productive and resilient agricultural industry in the UK. Scotland is expected to benefit the most from this policy; with around 5,000 individual farmers in the country helped.”