A poll commissioned by the Country Land and Business Association in Wales (CLA Cymru) has found that just 3% of farmers trust the Welsh government.

The poll comes amid rising tensions between the Senedd and rural communities as Cardiff develops new post-Brexit funding schemes for agriculture.

Now with the power to determine its own agriculture policy, the Welsh Government has been developing funding schemes that will replace the previous subsidy model with mechanisms to pay farmers for delivering environmental improvements.

While similar schemes have already been rolled out in England, slowly securing the support of farmers there, the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Farming Scheme (SFS) is only at formal consultation stage.

The same poll also found that 87% of farmers believed that SFS would neither support their business nor deliver positive environmental outcomes. Just 6% said they would opt into the schemes in their current form, which many consider to be unnecessarily prescriptive and complex.

CLA Cymru Director Victoria Bond said: “This is damning evidence, but it only proves what we already know – rural communities feel ignored and let down by the Welsh Government.

“The next First Minister must govern for all of Wales – not just the urban and industrial parts. Rural Wales is as much a part of our national culture as our cities, steelworks and former mining communities.

“As farmers, we work tirelessly to produce high quality food, and we are on the front line in the fight against climate change and nature decline. It is perfectly reasonable to expect the government to work with us constructively in the national interest.”

Ms Bond points to schemes in England, which have been improved by constant collaboration between Defra and rural organisations.

She added: “With a new First Minister we have the chance to hit the reset button. We know that schemes to support environmentally friendly land management practices can work when developed in a spirit of mutual respect.”