Farm incomes surged by 20 per cent in the UK last year - largely as a result of the fall in the value of the Sterling - according to Government figures.

The collapse in the Pound following the referendum vote to leave the European Union boosted the value of Common Agriculture Policy Basic Payments, which are set in Euros.

The weakness of the Sterling also resulted in firmer prices for a number of commodities, according to figures showing farm business income for the 2016-17 financial year. The figures have been released by the Defra.

Average income for the year was £38,000 - up 20 per cent on the £31,600 figure for 2015-16. The average Basic Payment in 2016-17 was £28,000 - a 19 per cent increase on the previous year.

General cropping
Average incomes on general cropping farms were 12 per cent higher in 2016-17 - up from £62,600 to £70,100.

Average farm business output was down two per cent but a small fall in crop output, combined with lower output from both diversified and agri-environment activities, was largely offset by a 13 per cent increase in Basic Payments.

Farm business output was 16 per cent higher due to increased output from both agriculture and agri-environment activities. Basic Payments increased by 29 per cent.

Income on horticultural units increased by 29 per cent from £34,400 to £43,800. This was largely driven by higher output for flowers, bulbs and nursery stock and, to a lesser extent, for fruit.