John Reed, newly re-elected chairman of the British Poultry Council (BPC) spoke of the challenges facing the British poultry meat sector, and also of how a strong and dynamic sector should be facing them with confidence.
Beginning his fourth term as chairman, Reed, agricultural director of Cargill Meats Europe, said: “British poultry meat producers feed the nation, and we will continue to do so. I am delighted to have been asked to continue as chairman of the BPC, and look forward to helping steer a great sector through the challenging times surrounding Brexit.”
Trade a major priority for British Poultry Council
The U.K. is a trading nation that imports and exports poultry meat and breeding stock to and from countries around the world. Imports are worth over GBP2 billion (US$2.45 billion) every year, with exports amounting to over GBP0.5 billion (US$0.61 billion), according to Reed. Three-quarters of that trade is with EU countries.
“During the Brexit negotiations we want the government to recognize the contribution that food production makes to this country, and how important trade is to a healthy British poultry meat industry.”
The British poultry meat sector is also a significant employer, and is concerned over the impact of Brexit on the movement of labor, the chairman said. There are many employment opportunities in the poultry meat sector, and British labor on its own is not enough.
Reed concluded: “People are the lifeblood of the sector, and continued movement of quality labor between Europe and the U.K. is crucial. I have been lucky to have a long and happy career in the British poultry meat sector and I want others to have that opportunity in the future.”