Inside food & drink manufacturing

Headlines > Regulation

Read more breaking news



Arla boss urges industry solidarity for Brexit talks

Post a comment
Matt Atherton

By Matt Atherton+

Last updated on 09-Jan-2017 at 16:01 GMT2017-01-09T16:01:16Z

Arla Foods md Tomas Pietrangeli calls for industry-wide solidarity in the face of Brexit threats
Arla Foods md Tomas Pietrangeli calls for industry-wide solidarity in the face of Brexit threats

The food and farming industries must work together to protect themselves against Brexit threats, while maximising its opportunities, urges Arla Foods’s md Tomas Pietrangeli.

Uncertainty around access to the EU’s Single Market of 500M consumers and the level of support for farmers after Brexit meant the sectors should speak with one voice to get the best outcome for them both, Pietrangeli said.

It was crucial to spell out to the government the importance of continued access to migrant labour and the Single Market.

“With so much speculation about what the impact of Brexit might be, it is important now, more than ever, that the food and farming industries work together to achieve the best outcomes for both,” Pietrangeli said.

‘Severe damage’

“There is no doubt that Brexit brings uncertainty, and although we’re optimistic about the future of the industry, severe damage could be done if the deal negotiated does not have the industry’s needs at its heart.”

Brexit could offer big opportunities for farmers and manufacturers, if the industries successfully outline the threats of Brexit to government, the Arla boss said. These included new dairy export markets and a revamp to the Common Agricultural Policy.

“Since the referendum, I’ve held talks with farmers, trade associations, the NFU [National Farmers Union] and government ministers on the potential impact of Brexit on the industry.

‘Fears and concerns’

“While everyone I’ve spoken to has expressed clear enthusiasm for what we do, I’ve heard a lot of different stories, fears and concerns about the possible impact of the various Brexit scenarios on the cards.”

Pietrangeli was “encouraged” by the start made in voicing the industries’ concerns, and said he was proud to add Arla’s support to a letter written to the prime minister from the largest-ever coalition of food producers and farming unions. The letter, dated November 30, urged the government to ensure continued access to the Single Market and labour after Brexit.

Meanwhile, environment secretary Andrea Leadsom tried to reassure food manufacturers and farmers that were concerned about continued access to non-UK EU workers. She said the government was “absolutely committed” to making sure the industry had the right skill set at the Oxford Farming Conference on Wednesday (January 4).


Arla boss on Brexit – at a glance
  • Food and farming industries must speak with one voice
  • Must make Brexit threats clear to government
  • Threats included loss of access to non-UK EU labour and Single Market

Post a comment

Comment title *
Your comment *
Your name *
Your email *

We will not publish your email on the site

I agree to Terms and Conditions

These comments have not been moderated. You are encouraged to participate with comments that are relevant to our news stories. You should not post comments that are abusive, threatening, defamatory, misleading or invasive of privacy. For the full terms and conditions for commenting see clause 7 of our Terms and Conditions ‘Participating in Online Communities’. These terms may be updated from time to time, so please read them before posting a comment. Any comment that violates these terms may be removed in its entirety as we do not edit comments. If you wish to complain about a comment please use the "REPORT ABUSE" button or contact the editors.