Julian calls for action to increase local food production
June 17, 2014
Julian has called on the Government to support farmers in their efforts to boost British food production.
Speaking in the House of Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs debate, Julian asked “Does the Secretary of State agree that any further Common Agricultural Policy reform has to focus on the simple issue of using farmland to produce food because we have to tackle the important issue of food security, which is looming more and more and is ever-present in our society?”
In response the Secretary of State, Owen Paterson MP, responded by saying “My hon. Friend is spot on. There are 1 billion people hungry in today’s world and we are heading for a further increase in population of 2 billion. We should be aware that there is no unlimited cheap, safe food beyond our shores—it was the position of the last Government that there was—so we as a Government absolutely want to see domestic food production increase. We already have a huge task: 30% of the food eaten in this country is imported, but could be produced here.”
Back in the constituency, Julian was pleased with the Minister’s response. He said “for centuries we have taken our peacetime food supply for granted, mainly because of how easy it has been in the past to import food from abroad. However, global food prices have been rising sharply in recent years and more needs to be done to tackle the issue.
“We are privileged to have access to some of the most fertile and high quality agricultural land in Europe around York, which must be protected from short-sighted and unsustainable development. I was also able to remind the Leader of the House in a separate debate of my concerns about the Council’s plans to build two industrial sized solar farms on valuable green belt land. I am pleased that reforms have been made to limit the spread of such installations on our surrounding countryside because we have to do more to protect our high grade food producing land from the urban industrialisation of ill thought through planning policies.”