NatWest, through its asset finance arm Lombard, will offer additional financial support to McCain potato farmers. In addition, McCain has also committed to offering a contribution towards the interest payable for assets that support regenerative agriculture practices.
James Young, vice-president of Agriculture at McCain GB&I, said: “Given the increasingly unpredictable climate, the shift towards regenerative agriculture practices is vital to futureproof the farming industry, and we want to support McCain potato farmers who are making the transition towards more sustainable operations.
“We know that switching to regenerative agriculture can come with financial implications, and this new partnership will be a part of the effort to alleviate those barriers. We are working with our growers, customers and key stakeholders to ensure the long-term viability of potato growing in the UK.”
As part of its wider regenerative agriculture initiatives, McCain joined the Sustainable Markets Initiative Agibusiness Task Force alongside a number of businesses and NGOs to accelerate the scaling of greener practices in the farming industry worldwide.
McCain’s partnership with Lombard and NatWest is one of a number of initiatives to promote the economic viability of regenerative agriculture to UK farmers. Other initiatives include grants for cover crop seed and fully funding soil health assessments, as well as offering free pollinator seed this spring.
‘Daunting challenge of net zero’
NatWest head of agriculture Ian Burrow added: “NatWest and Lombard are thrilled to be working with McCain to help their farmers invest in sustainable farming practices. Agriculture is a sector of paramount importance to the UK economy and one which is at a turning point, facing higher costs, inflation and the daunting challenge of net zero.
“This partnership further enhances the aims and ambitions of the Sustainable Markets Initiative taskforce, which NatWest is proud to be a part of, and we will continue to stand by farmers and work closely with influential partners, like McCain, to help drive change across the industry.”
Meanwhile, in January, McCain invested £35m into British farming in a bid to safeguard the long-term sustainability of growing potatoes in the UK.