UK farmers could lose hundreds and thousands of pounds as a state of drought is officially declared in some parts of the country following the worst dry spell in more than 20 years.

Farmers in Lincolnshire are reporting poor crops as irrigation restrictions bite.

“What we’re finding is that the conditions for harvesting are very good but the crops we are harvesting are not very good at all,” Steven Francis, head of Fen Peas told the BBC.

“We’ve had 60% of the rainfall we normally have since December. We can water some of the crops but it’s really gone beyond that now.”

“I’ve been doing this for 20 years and it’s the worst I’ve seen it. We can safely say we’ll lose hundreds of thousands of pounds this year.”

Some farmers and growers in the region have switched to night irrigation to reduce the amount of evaporation.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)  have said that Cambridgeshire, parts of Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire and western Norfolk were also officially in a drought while some parts of the South West, South East, Midlands and Wales have been declared as experiencing ‘near-drought conditions’.

Defra is due to hold a drought summit today, bringing together farmers, utility companies, water companies and environment groups to tackle the problem of scarce water and the continuing dry conditions.

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