Last nights shock election leaving the country in a state of flux has prompted an immediate reaction from NFU President Meurig Raymond. In a statement issued this morning he called for clarity and certainty from whoever ends up governing the country and asked them to act with the best interests of the British farmer in the forthcoming complicated and difficult Brexit negotiations.
Mr Raymond said: “The NFU is committed to start working with whoever forms the new government to ensure all areas of Whitehall understand and value the importance of British food and farming. The NFU has a good relationship with all parties and, as ever, will work with whoever is in power to promote the interests of British farming.
“British farming underpins the country’s largest manufacturing sector and with farming arguably the sector most impacted by Brexit, NFU members need clarity and certainty as soon as possible over who will govern the country and how they plan to support profitable, productive and progressive agriculture and horticulture in the future. The NFU will be seeking early meetings with Ministers. It is important for our industry to have clarity and see certainty from a functioning administration as soon as possible.
“British farms currently grow the raw ingredients for the UK food and drink manufacturing sector worth £109 billion and for every £1 invested, farming delivers seven-fold back to this country. Moreover, it is clear the British public value and want to continue to buy British food.”
“If the formal Brexit negotiations begin as planned on June 19 we will continue to push for the right post-Brexit trade deal, regulatory framework, a domestic agricultural policy suited to Britain and access to a competent, reliable workforce.
“We are also calling on the new government to support British farming through a number of other measures, including a commitment to continue with the 25-year TB Eradication strategy, ensuring regulation is based on robust scientific evidence, and tackling the increasing problems of rural crime. The government should be proud to promote British food at home and abroad and champion British food and farming through its public procurement policy.”