Sunday, June 16, 2024

PM to announce measures to support UK farmers and growers

The UK needs to reduce its reliance on overseas fruit and vegetables and back British producers, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will tell the second Farm to Fork Summit at Downing Street tiday.

The announcement comes as the first UK Food Security Index published to ensure the government and sector is resilient to unexpected shocks to the market and extreme weather.

Measures to be announced today include up to £3 million towards supporting small and mobile abattoirs to support British farmers; a £22m infrastructure grant for laying hens to help poultry farmers to improve the health, welfare and productivity of their flocks; a £72m fund to the Endemics Diseases Scheme to help eradicate bovine viral diarrhoea in cattle, control porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome in pigs and tackle a range of different health conditions in sheep; and appointment of a Commissioner for the Tenant Farming Sector this autumn.

Mr Sunak said:“Come rain or shine, I will always back British farmers. From feeding the nation to protecting our countryside, they are vital to the security and the fabric of our country.

“This package of support will help farmers produce more British food, delivers on our long-term plan to invest in our rural communities, and ensures the very best of our homegrown products end up on our plates.

“I know for many farmers, the impact of adverse weather in recent months has made working the land even harder, but my message is clear, our support for you is unwavering and we will be with you every step of the way.”

Environment Secretary Steve Barclay said: “Food security is vital to our national security, which is why today’s summit is so important, bringing together government and key representatives from the farming and food sector at Downing Street.

“This announcement will turbocharge the growth of our horticultural sector supporting the building of cutting-edge glasshouses and innovative farming techniques to put British fruit and vegetables on our plates all-year round.

“We will continue to invest in and support farmers to produce the best of British food to strengthen our food security, championing innovation in the sector.”

 

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