R HOLLAND asks 'who will be buying our lamb' after we Brexit.( Craven Herald Letters September 17)

As a producer of fat lambs and part of a sector that exports 40 per cent of UK lamb to the EU, I have to say I do not share the optimism of our dear leader as regards a 'good outcome'.

If we leave the EU with a fully free trade deal with no World Trade Organisation (WTO) tariffs or quotas and the same terms regarding standards as now, then perhaps we will hardly notice any change to the present.

Given the latest shenanigans of what passes for our Government I am less than optimistic that they consider that would be a good outcome or even desirable.

If we consider a position where we trade on WTO rules with tariffs the picture will be wholly different. It is likely that the continental buyers will be resistant to a price increase to cover the 48 per cent WTO tariff as will the transporters, meat packers, carcass dressers, slaughterhouses and meat buyers. Inevitably the cost will be passed back to the primary producer ie: folk like me. In the event of WTO rules my forward planning is to work on a fat lamb price to me of around £40. This year so far with three quarters of my lambs away we are a smidgen under £80.

It does not take a mathematical genius to conclude that will be a problem for sheep farmers of the highest order. Possibly existential.

Neither am I comforted by the happy news of a free trade deal with Japan where reports suggest we have swapped our EU membership deal for a UK/Japan deal on worse terms. I can only conclude that when HMG can trumpet a worse deal then at present as 'a good outcome' that we truly live in Orwellian times.

Anthony Bradley

Long Preston