Statement from Professor Joanna Price, Vice-Chancellor of the Royal Agricultural University (RAU), in response to publication of the National Food Strategy:
“Maintaining food security in the face of climate change is one of our major global challenges and, as a society, it is our responsibility to address the challenges and dilemmas about how, and where, our food is produced, how we all can equally access nutritious food, and the role of individuals, communities, businesses, and government in developing food chains fit for the future.
“Having a National Food Strategy is a first step towards developing a cohesive, inclusive response to many of the contemporary challenges associated with our food choices.
“This is a time of uncertainty and transition for UK landowners, farmers, and food producers, not only with the impact of the Agriculture Act, the Environment Bill, but now the National Food Strategy. What farming businesses need now, more than anything, is to have clarity on the direction the policy is heading, how it will be implemented, and how these policy measures will change the economics and dynamics of food production.
“These changes in national policy will affect farming practices and the cost, quality, and availability of food products that are available to consumers. For farmers, food businesses, consumers, policy makers, and those of us in academic communities, it will take time to absorb the contents of this detailed strategy document and understand its full implications. It brings together a number of challenging messages, especially around meat consumption, that will need serious reflection.
“The RAU can play a pivotal role in supporting this change across the rural and land-based sector both nationally and internationally. We welcome the publishing of the National Food Strategy today and look forward to being part of the discussions that follow on how the recommendations it makes can be put into practice.”