CLA President, David Fursdon, said during a vist to the Vale of
Glamorgan today (Thursday 19 October) that he has won the support
of the Prime Minister in the CLA's latest drive to keep farming
profitable. Mr Fursdon and the CLA policy and communications
team met Tony Blair and David Miliband at 10 Downing Street earlier
He said he had stressed to Mr Blair how important it is to keep
farming profitable. And he outlined the difficulties farmers
are facing, despite being among the most efficient in the world.
"We were delighted that the Prime Minister was so supportive
of our determination to create a culture in which people ask
where the food on their plate comes from", Mr Fursdon told
South Wales CLA members at Fonmon Castle near Barry.
"We impressed upon him that Agriculture not only underpins
the rural economy, it sustains rural communities and has created
the landscape and environment valued across all sectors of society.
"The Prime Minister listened carefully to our concerns
about the direction of UK farming policy, and especially the
problems farmers are having trying to cope with regulatory
"He and David Miliband MP supported the CLA initiative,
planned for its Centenary in 2007. This will move the CLA's
food labelling initiative onto the next stage by taking it to
"We explained that it aims to bring about a change in the
attitude of the British public; to create a culture in which
people ask where the food on their plate comes from".
Mr Fursdon said the CLA also pressed home the need for concrete
tax measures to help increase the amount of available affordable
housing in rural areas to help sustain rural communities.
He added that the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State
agreed with the CLA that it was important to increase the amount
of land-based renewable energy in the UK - much more than we
have so far with wind power. The CLA has recently published
a report in partnership with the University of East Anglia into
land management and climate change.
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