Farmers tackle Gove over British food

By Aidan Fortune contact

- Last updated on GMT

National Farmers' Union president Minette Batters has urged Michael Gove to protect British food
National Farmers' Union president Minette Batters has urged Michael Gove to protect British food
The importance of British food to the economy, particularly as it gears up to leave the EU, has been stressed to the Secretary of State for Food and Environment Michael Gove.

Speaking at an MP reception at the House of Commons, National Farmers' Union president Minette Batters reiterated how vital British food is.

Batters said: “It is a pivotal time for British farmers; we’ve just submitted a response to the biggest consultation on the future of the farming sector in 40 years and we will soon see the Agriculture Bill. It has never been so important to underline the value of the British food and farming sector to Government.  

“It is our strong belief that every person, no matter what their income, has a right to have access to quality, safe, traceable food produced to high animal welfare and environmental standards. And it’s this food that British farmers are able to deliver.

“The fruits, vegetables, meat, dairy and cereals farmers produce go into the UK’s biggest manufacturing sector – food and drink –which is contributing £112 billion to our economy and underpins nearly four million jobs. British farming’s vital role in this cannot be ignored.

“British farming’s offer doesn’t stop there; it stretches across 70% of the nation’s iconic countryside, caring for the natural environment and providing habitats for wildlife. Farmers really are the original friends of the earth."

She made these comments ahead of the NFU Summer Reception, which will see Gove deliver a keynote speech to more than 100 MPs and farmers to make the case for the importance of producing more quality, British food post-Brexit. Batters said this was a perfect time to tell the story of British food.

“With such a good story to tell on behalf of Britain’s food and farming industry, this event will be yet another opportunity for us to get these important messages across to Government.”

Related topics: Supply Chain, Fresh produce

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