Module: Agricultural Policy and Legislation

Module details

  • Module code

  • Module leader

    Philip Hudson
  • Module Level

  • Module credits

  • Min study time

    150 hours
  • Contact hrs

    45 hours

Module content

Aspects of public policy formulation; the significance and evolution of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and its effect on UK agriculture. The impact of Brexit on UK agriculture.

Current EU and UK Legislation relevant to land based industries (e.g. Farm Waste regulations, NVZs, Control of Pesticide regulations, Health and Safety, Environmental protection, etc.) Basic Farm Scheme and Cross compliance. Management plans and codes of practice.

Module outcomes

To achieve credit for this module, students must be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the range of rural policies.
  2. Demonstrate an awareness of the impact of policy on countryside management.
  3. Compile the relevant management plans as required under current EU, UK and DEFRA policy.
  4. Demonstrate an awareness of farm assurance protocols.
  5. Demonstrate an awareness of regulations affecting farm businesses


Assessment Description Weighting
Coursework Describe and justify the key elements of a new agricultural policy for the UK after leaving the EU 50%
Examination Exam (2 hours) 50%

Assessments may differ in 2020/21 due to adjustments for Covid-19. Please check Gateway for the latest regulations.

Key texts

Students should be familiar with the content of at least one of the following:

  • Gov. office for Science (2011) Future of food and farming report, executive summary, Gov. office for Science
  • EU Commission, (2004) The Common Agricultural Policy Explained, EU Commission


Supporting texts

  • Boyd, J.A., Jalal, K.F. and Rogers, P.P. (2008). An Introduction to Sustainable Development. Earthscan.
  • DEFRA. (2012). Progress Towards a Sustainable Future for Livestock Farming. DEFRA.
  • DEFRA. (2009). The Future of our Farming. DEFRA.
  • DEFRA. (2002). The Strategy for Sustainable Farming and Food. Facing the Future. DEFRA.
  • Graham, I. (2011). Farming in the Future. Wayland.Environment Agency (2008). Think Soils: Soil Assessment to Avoid Erosion and Runoff. Environment Agency.
  • Petty J et al. (2010) The top 100 questions of importance to the future of global agriculture. International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability 8, 219-136
  • Hawkins, D.E. (2006). Corporate Social Responsibility: Balancing Tomorrow's Sustainability and Today's Profitability. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Jackson, L. and Jackson, D. (2002). The Farm as Natural Habitat: Reconnecting Food Systems with Ecosystems. Island.
  • Juniper, J. (2013) What Has Nature Ever Done For Us? How Money Really Does Grow On Trees.  Profile Books.  London
  • Hertel, T. (2010). The Global Supply and Demand for Agricultural Land in 2050: A Perfect Storm in the Making? GTAP Working Paper No 63. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University. (link)
  • Spilsbury, R. and Spilsbury, L. (2011). Farming and the Environment. Wayland.
  • The Royal Society (2009). Reaping the Benefits: Science and the Sustainable Intensification of Global Agriculture. London: The Royal Society. (link)
  • Farmers Weekly.
  • Farmers Guardian
  • The Grocer
  • International Journal of Agricultural Management.
  • Journal of Environmental Conservation.
  • Journal of Environmental Planning and Management.
  • Journal of Planning and Environmental Law.
  • Journal of Farm Management.