During a Westminster Hall debate today (13 July 2022) I expressed my concerns to the Minister for Farming, Fisheries, and Food, Victoria Prentis MP. I made the following points:
- The Government is not doing enough to provide opportunities for young graduates and young people looking for work in the agricultural industry.
- The Government is not taking advantage of no longer being subject to the European Union’s common agricultural policy.
- The Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food should be reinstated (it was disbanded it in 2002), Previously the department provided essential support and advice to food producers across the UK.
- The price of fertiliser has increased at an alarming rate, with ammonium nitrate going from £200 per tonne in 2021 to £900 per tonne today. This has come after some of the UK’s few plants have been closed.
Minister Prentis responded by saying:
“I have frequently discussed farming issues with my hon. Friend the Member for Shrewsbury and Atcham (Daniel Kawczynski) and the farmers he represents so well. I agree that the opportunities for the future of agriculture are vast. Let me put on record how pleased I am that we passed, with agreement broadly across the House, Committee stage of the Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill last week. In a week that was perhaps difficult for the Government, that was a high point and is exactly what my hon. Friend means when he says that there are real opportunities for the future of agriculture if we are able to grasp the regulatory space. I would be delighted to visit Harper Adams, although my hon. Friend the Member for Bury St Edmunds (Jo Churchill), who so recently and sadly departed from the Department, visited extremely recently and came away full of ideas.”
Click on the link to view the debate: https://parliamentlive.tv/Download/Index/77e59925-16f4-4451-bacb-751fd0fca24d