A NEW REPORT from the National Farmers Union (NFU) has revealed that the agricultural industry in the UK is bucking the recession trend and delivering for the nation’s economy.
The new report ‘Backing the Business of British Farming’ was published on the first day of the NFU’s annual conference earlier this week.
It outlined how the UK farming sector’s contribution to the overall economy of Britain had grown by up to 54% between 2007 and 2012, and that agriculture contributed an additional £8.6 billion to the economy between 2008 and 2012.
The NFU went on to reiterate Footprint’s ‘Boost Britain, Buy British’ message to the government to support growth in the sector by developing new economic policies that aim to develop output and production.
The report was backed up by a new consumer survey that shows 88% of people believe it is important that the Government should have a strategy to ensure a secure and affordable supply of British food.
NFU President Peter Kendall said: “The achievements shown in this report prove that farming has been delivering for Britain’s economy despite the challenges thrown at us over the past couple of years – heavy rain, drought, unseasonable snow and in recent weeks, we have all seen the impacts of flooding across the country and the challenges farmers have faced and sought to understand the impacts on our food supplies.
“We as an industry produce the raw materials for the biggest manufacturing sector in the economy, so trying to get people to understand our contribution to the whole economy is absolutely vital. We are growing businesses. We are creating jobs. If the Government is looking for a sector to kick-start growth and rebalance the economy then they should start by looking at agriculture. I believe any long term economic plan for growth in the UK must include a long-term and strategic food plan.”
Footprint’s Buy British, Boost Britain campaign mirrors these thoughts, with aims to help boost production by encouraging the hospitality to buy food produced in the UK and thereby increasing demand.
Footprint’s campaign is also urging the government to work to attract investment in the sector, to cope with increased demand and create sustainable, responsible supply.