LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming) welcomes the recommendations set out in the Government’s first major food strategy for sixty years.
‘Food 2030’, unveiled by the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Rt Hon Hilary Benn MP at the Oxford Farming Conference, calls on farmers to produce more food while reducing their environmental impact.
It sets out a series of tasks for different parts of the food chain urging different sectors to work together to improve profitability, productivity and competitiveness.
“Food 2030 is an ambitious document” said LEAF Chief Executive, Caroline Drummond. “It is good to see Government recognising the complexities of the food supply chain and calling for a joined up food policy. The strategy sets out a vision where consumers are able to make informed choices about the food they eat and be able to afford sustainably produced food, grown by farmers who are actively reducing their green house gas emissions, reducing waste and using less energy.”
“The real challenge is making it happen on the ground” continued Caroline Drummond. “LEAF has a lot of relevant experience and management tools to help. Our Integrated Farm Management approach and our range of practical technical tools like the LEAF Audit and the Green Box help farmers to monitor and reduce their environmental impact, whilst maintaining their profitability.”
LEAF members, carrying out the LEAF Audit on an annual basis can track the areas of their business where significant reductions in their green house gas emissions can be made.”
“Furthermore, raising awareness amongst consumers about sustainable food production is one of LEAF’s core objectives” explained Ms Drummond. “Our nationwide network of Demonstration Farms and Open Farm Sunday help to get thousands of people out onto farms every year learning about food, farming and our countryside.”
“Food 2030 also calls for a more global approach to food production and forging partnerships around the world to meet the needs of a growing population. The LEAF Marque operates in some thirty four countries across the world, helping both small scale farmers and large landowners to meet common sustainable farming standards.”
“The central message to farmers coming out of the report” concluded Caroline Drummond “is that they need to produce more and impact less on precious natural resources on which food production depends. LEAF has the tools and expertise to help farmers meet this challenge head on and we look forward to working with Defra, our industry partners and our members to make it all happen.”
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