'We would have run out of food on August 11 had we relied solely on British produce'
Although slightly belated I wanted to mention two important dates that have recently passed in the NFU calendar.
August 11 marked the notional day in the calendar where the country would run out of food, if we fed everyone from January 1, and if we relied solely on British produce, writes NFU group secretary Phil Ingleby.
The NFU used this date to highlight the decline in the UK’s food security and to call on government to make a strong commitment to British farming. UK self-sufficiency reduced to 61 per cent in 2018 compared to 78 per cent in 1984. The NFU has called upon the Government to put policies in place for the UK to feed a growing nation and not to let self sufficiency fall below current levels.
September 11 saw the NFU’s annual Back British Farming Day which provides an important focus on the importance of food and farming to the national economy, an industry that provides the raw ingredients for the UK’s largest manufacturing sector - food and drink - which generates more than £120billion for the national economy and provides jobs for more than four million people.
On Back British Farming Day, the NFU deputy president and director general met with the Prime Minister at Downing Street to raise the important immediate farming issues the PM needs to address.I find it reassuring that in these politically turbulent times the Prime Minister found the time, to listen to the NFU and that the NFU has the ability to influence at the highest levels to support the industry.