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Julian Sturdy - Strong Voice for York Outer

Julian Sturdy

Member of Parliament for York Outer

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Julian explores UK food and farming options post-Brexit

October 28, 2016

Julian recently met with some of the country’s most innovative producers and farmers to discuss the future of UK food production.

As Chairman of both the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Science and Technology in Agriculture, and the APPG for Rural Business, Julian met food producers from a range of farms and businesses, from dairy to livestock and the organic sector.

The meeting was held by the APPG on Agroecology for Sustainable Food and Farming, and represented a useful opportunity for Julian to hear from people in one of the sectors that will be most directly affected by Brexit. It was also attended by Lord Kimble, Minister for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

As part of leaving the EU, the UK will have to create its first national agriculture and food policy for over 40 years, and a large number of powers over farming, fisheries, food production and conservation will revert to exclusive British government control.

Julian said “I was very pleased to have such productive discussions with people involved in making everyday decisions on how we get our food, and I think it’s important elected representatives like me spend as much time as possible listening to those sectors of the economy who will be most affected by Brexit.

Leaving the EU means huge choices, but also huge opportunities for food producers, other farming businesses and conservation agencies across the UK. Getting full control back from Brussels means we can create a food, farming and conservation policy tailored to UK interests, rather than those of 28 very different countries.

I believe it is particularly important we make it as easy as possible for new and small farming businesses to enter the market, innovate and thrive, something confirmed by the discussions I had last Wednesday. Ensuring food security and environmental protection will also be vital to any new British Agricultural Policy, and these are things I will continue to urge the government to deliver on”.

Julian is looking forward to playing a significant role in scrutinising and making helpful contributions to the new UK food and farming policy as it emerges, and believes a careful balance needs to be struck between supporting agricultural production and ensuring the protection of the environment.