NFU seeking urgent meeting with Government to discuss future of British farming

The NFU is seeking an urgent meeting with the highest level of Government, after the lack of progress at the EU Council meeting last night.

NFU President Minette Batters said that the uncertainty now facing farmers and growers is hugely damaging, reminding Government that this is a sector that produces the raw ingredients for the UK’s largest manufacturing sector, food and drink.

Mrs Batters said: “More than two years on from the EU referendum, farmers and growers are still faced with considerable uncertainty around what the future will look like for their businesses.

“From a new EU trading relationship to how businesses will be able to recruit a competent and reliable workforce, the lack of clarity and current timescales are now seriously undermining farming’s ability to plan ahead.

“Understanding the trading environment you are operating in is vital to any business. For long-term businesses like farming, it is completely unacceptable. Farmers are having to plan now what they will produce and where it will be sold. To do this without any awareness of what the trading environment will be is impossible.

“It is vital to both the UK and the EU that a deal is reached which allows the food and farming sector to have a viable future. The NFU has maintained that free and frictionless trade is central to that. This trading relationship allows British farmers to provide safe, traceable and affordable food to the public, all while adhering to some of the highest animal welfare and environmental standards in the world.

“Farmers deliver for our economy, providing jobs and driving growth in rural communities. We provide the raw materials for a domestic food industry that employs 3.8m people and generates £113bn in value for the UK economy.

“The potential of leaving without a deal is unthinkable for British farming and I urge both sides to continue negotiations to reach a deal that works for everyone.

“I am now seeking an urgent meeting with the highest levels of the UK Government to stress the urgency of the situation now facing us.”

 

 

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About The Author

John Swire - Deputy editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer as well as responsibility for the Agronomist and Arable Farmer and Farm Business websites. After 17 years milking cows on the family farm John started writing about agriculture in 1998 and has since written for a variety of publications and has developed a wide circle of contacts within the industry. When not working John is a season ticket holder at Stoke City and also of late has become a fitness freak, listing cycling, swimming and walking as his exercises of choice.