NFU meets new Defra Secretary of State at Great Yorkshire Show to push for firm commitments from new government

11 July 2024

NFU Vice President Rachel Hallos held talks with new Defra Secretary of State Steve Reed and Farming Minister Daniel Zeichner at the Great Yorkshire Show to highlight farming’s pivotal role in contributing £3.4 billion to the local economy.

They were joined by Janet Hughes, Defra Director of Farming and Countryside Programme, in a roundtable discussion where senior NFU officeholders put questions to the new Government team to discuss the state of the industry and plans for growth.

With a new government in place the NFU reminded ministers of the many benefits farming provides in terms of food production, jobs, the environment and to our communities, and made it clear how investment in the sector will ensure this continues.

Official figures reveal that farming contributes more than £3.4 billion to the Yorkshire economy and rural tourism and provides more than 30,000 jobs in the county.

Yorkshire farmers also protect and enhance the countryside, support the environment and work to the highest standards of animal welfare while delivering healthy, safe, affordable food.

NFU Vice President Rachel Hallos said:

The conversation was very positive, and it was good to hear that there is a will to work collaboratively, which was welcomed by all the farmers attending the meeting.

I certainly left the meeting with a viewpoint of let’s get on with it then – we all recognise the problems, let’s come up with the solutions.

Let’s increase the confidence of our farmers and get this moving, we’ve got a lot to do. We can grow the food, we can farm the environment. Let’s make it work.

The NFU is calling for the new government to set an increased multi-year agriculture budget which lasts for the duration of the next Parliament.

Prioritising this budget will enable actions in every constituency, deliver the confidence to the industry, ensuring it will deliver on the government’s own food security and environmental ambitions.

Other key asks included for politicians to deliver fairness in the supply chain and to bring forward legislation as soon as possible to ensure at least half of all food purchased across the public sector is produced locally.

The development and establishment of core production standards to prevent Yorkshire farmers from being undercut by food imports produced to standards that would be illegal here are also being sought.

Helping farmers overcome issues around accessing labour and mitigating against the devastating impact of flooding are among other key asks being pushed by the NFU.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.



Go toTop