Urgent action is needed to galvanise community, industry and government efforts to break the stigma around mental health and end the “silent suffering” on East Anglia’s farms.

An enormous tomato greenhouse is beginning to take shape in fields outside Bury St Edmunds – part of a £120m project to establish East Anglia as a trailblazer for low carbon farming.

VAT on tourism businesses should be cut to 5pc to help the rural economy recover from the coronavirus crisis, said East Anglia’s countryside business leaders.

East Anglia’s MPs have been urged to speak up for the region’s crucial food and farming industries ahead of tomorrow’s key debate on the UK’s post-Brexit agricultural policy.

The characteristic crop which turns Norfolk fields into a sea of yellow each spring could be under threat in future without a “joined-up approach” to protect its viability, said farming leaders.

The coronavirus crisis has exposed the fragility of our food chains and proved the worth of East Anglia’s farmers – presenting a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” to harness support for British food.

Farming leaders have urged the government to delay the transition away from EU subsidies and offer immediate assistance to rural businesses with their environmental payments during the coronavirus pandemic.

Most farmers believe the coronavirus crisis could ultimately “change agriculture for the better” after the current disruption and uncertainty subsides, according to an industry survey.

An online business “match-making” service has been launched to help East Anglia’s food producers and buyers find each other amid the supply chain disruption of the coronavirus lockdown.

Skilled Romanian farm workers are being flown into the UK to help train a new “Land Army” to save East Anglia’s salad and vegetable harvest during the coronavirus lockdown.

Two vast tomato greenhouses being built in Norfolk and Suffolk will become a “bankable template” for another 41 sites across the country – putting East Anglia at the forefront of a low-carbon farming revolution.

A “misguided” campaign to support the NHS by releasing sky lanterns could risk starting fires in the countryside and injuring farm livestock, fire chiefs and rural leaders have warned.

Farming charities have launched a joint awareness campaign to highlight ways they can help farmers cope with the financial and emotional pressures of the coronavirus pandemic.

East Anglia’s rural economy – and the countryside communities who rely on it – need to be protected from the financial impacts of the coronavirus pandemic says CATH CROWTHER, East regional director of the Country Land and Business Association (CLA).

High-profile East Anglian farmers have backed a new education project to help house-bound children reconnect with the countryside while learning from home during the lockdown.

Dairy farmers have called for urgent government action to help their businesses survive the coronavirus lockdown after demand for milk dried up from cafes and restaurants.

Rare native livestock breeds have the potential to flourish under post-Brexit farming policies, said a conservation charity after publishing its latest Watchlist.

An “appalling” dog attack which left two sheep dead and another 20 seriously injured on an Essex farm has sparked renewed warnings for dogs to be kept on leads near livestock.

Sugar beet growers have won an emergency authorisation to use a soon-to-be-banned pesticide to protect their crops against “very significant disease challenges” this spring.

“Essential travel” certificates are being issued to help farmers justify their movements if challenged by police enforcing the coronavirus lockdown.

Farming leaders have called on institutional landlords – including estates owned by the Queen and the church – to show “flexibility and understanding” regarding their tenants’ rent during the coronavirus crisis.

East Anglian agriculture is affected by the complex range of factors driving global economics – and industry experts have given their insights on what changes farmers can expect in the year ahead.

Next week’s budget is an opportunity to create a much-needed simplified tax system for diversified rural businesses says Cath Crowther, East regional director for the Country Land and Business Association (CLA).

An educational charity is calling on Essex farmers to help bring the working countryside to life for children from disadvantaged areas who would otherwise be unlikely to experience it.

Countryside groups have united to demand the government updates “inadequate” legislation which they claim is hindering attempts to tackle the devastating impact of illegal hare coursing.

Farmers are pleading with the chancellor not to axe the subsidy for red diesel in next week’s budget – a move which they fear could heap further financial pressure on their industry.

East Anglian farmers have rubbished the “daft” suggestion by a senior government adviser that Britain does not need an agricultural industry.

Serious concerns have been raised that the government’s post-Brexit immigration plans could “severely impact the farming sector” by preventing it recruiting vital foreign workers.

The appointment of George Eustice as environment secretary has been welcomed by farming leaders in East Anglia, who hope his industry expertise will prove valuable at a crucial time for agriculture.

Farmers must act fast to adapt to a rapidly-changing climate – but they were told that increasingly detailed monitoring and forecasting technologies can give their crops the best chance of success.

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