There has recently been an increase in interest amongst policy-makers in the question of whether farming provides a “public good” beyond the simple production of food, which justifies support from, for instance, EU agricultural policy. Benefits such as an improved environment or better water quality can be perceived to be public goods. It is the provision of these sorts of benefits which may be used in the future to justify continued support of the agricultural sector through subsidies. Given the current level of interest in this topic Natural England, with the approval of Defra, through OCIS (Organic Conversion Information Service), wished to create a tool which could be used by an advisor or an informed land owner to assess the public good provided by a/their farm. Thus, the OCIS Public Good Tool was developed
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