Political Print

Political Print: a few sandwiches short of a Brexit picnic

Ministers are finally waking up to the looming food crisis but can they find a solution before March 29th? By Nick Hughes. First the good news on Brexit: the BLT is safe. That’s according to the Brexit secretary, Dominic Raab, who took the unusual but courageous step of using a sandwich analogy to reassure the…
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Political Print: the great fat fight is back on

Experts are again clashing over healthy diets in a bout that’s set to be long and bloody. By Nick Hughes. Ding ding! That was the sound of the bell ringing for the latest round in the great fat fight. Last year Footprint reported the bitter split in the public health community over the role of…
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Peering into the Brexit gloom

Last week’s Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum focused on the future of food regulation after Brexit. What did we learn? By David Burrows. GLASSES ARE HALF EMPTY. Pessimism is increasing when it comes to food and Brexit. Research presented by Food Standards Scotland showed that the number of consumers who believe prices will go up…
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Political Print: Foodservice on the fringes yet again

The government’s latest policy forum is a gathering of the same old, same old. It’s time for the sector to stand up and be heard, writes Nick Hughes. The government’s new Food and Drink Sector Council met for the first time at the end of January, an occasion DEFRA marked by sharing a convivial picture…
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Political Print: ultra-processed foods can be a casualty of Brexit

Britain’s appetite for ready meals and sugary cereal has made headlines this week - just as ministers are considering the future of farm subsidies. By David Burrows. The average household availability of “ultra-processed” foods in the UK is 50.4%. In other words, half of all the foods bought here are about as far from “real…
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Could 2018 be the year we start paying the true cost of our food?

Ministers are signalling they may be open to calls to make companies pick up the environmental and health costs of their products. By Nick Hughes. A recent report from the Sustainable Food Trust found that for every £1 UK citizens spend on food, another £1 is incurred in additional costs to society. These can take…
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Political Print: you’d have to be green to believe May is

The prime minister’s big conversion to environmentalism is no more convincing than her predecessor’s, writes David Burrows. It has been almost 12 years since David Cameron, at the time the Conservative leader and in opposition, travelled to the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard to show the public he cared about the environment. You know the trip:…
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Michael Gove resumes his reformist role

DEFRA secretary’s vision for food and farming is a political gamble. But if it comes off it could be great news for the environment and public health, says Nick Hughes. Love him or loathe him, one thing you can never accuse Michael Gove of is being a safe politician. Taken at face value (and more…
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Political Print: where’s the right royal welcome for the industrial strategy?

Prince Harry’s engagement to Meghan Markle stole the headlines from a crucial announcement for Britain’s future. By Nick Hughes. It’s an enduring British media tradition (and frankly an enduring mystery to the Print) that royal events torpedo political events in the news cycle. Take the launch of the government’s much-anticipated industrial strategy, which sank without…
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Panglossian views are not restricted to the political Pollyanna

The transport secretary’s view of post-Brexit food supply is reason to panic, says David Burrows. The EU has led UK food and environment policy for the past 43 years. Brexit therefore offers an opportunity to rip things up and start again, and who better to lead us into this new era of secure, safe, healthy…
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