NFU food standards petition hits one million signatures

NFU food standards petition hits 1 million header image_73795

More than a million people have pledged their support for British farming and food production by signing the NFU’s petition urging the government to ensure future trade deals do not lead to an increase in food imports that would be illegal to produce here.

More than 78,000 people have also written to their MP urging them to support the introduction of a Trade, Food and Farming Standards Commission that can review trade policy and develop solutions that can hold all food imports to the UK’s high standards.

It is the clearest indication yet that the British public do not want to see food on their supermarket shelves, or in their restaurants and cafes, that falls below the standards British farmers adhere to.

The issue of where our food comes from and how it is produced has united the public up and down the country with every MP being contacted by a constituent on the topic, as well as drawing the support of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and the Mail on Sunday.

George Eustice - NFU Conference 2020

Pictured above: NFU President Minette Batters in conversation with Defra Secretary of State George Eustice at NFU Conference in February 2020

NFU President Minette Batters said:

“It has been overwhelming to see this volume of support. The fact that more than one million people have signed a petition urging the government to put into law rules that prevent food being imported to the UK which is produced in ways that would be illegal here is a clear signal of how passionate the British public feel about this issue.

“It is now clear that it is simply not credible for the government to continue to just pay lip service to this issue, when there is such public support for action. They must now give guarantees to the British people that they have listened to their concerns and will make firm commitments to address them."

“Trade policy is complicated, but what the public are telling us is quite simple. They care deeply about their food, where it comes from and how it is produced.

“They do not want to see chlorinated chicken or hormone-fed beef on their supermarket shelves and nor do they want to see food imported which has been produced in lower welfare or environmental systems than is legally allowed in this country. Farmers, animal welfare groups, environmentalists and now the public have made their voices clear.

“There is a simple solution that we are presenting; the introduction of a Trade, Food and Farming Standards Commission. This would be an independent body that can review trade policy and ensure all of our food imports are held to the same standards expected of British farmers."

“Given the clear commitments in the Conservative Party manifesto that they will not compromise British farming’s high standards, is it not a logical next step to put in place a panel of experts that can carry out that direction?

“These are decisions that will leave a legacy for decades and generations to come. It is so important that we get this right. Access to safe, traceable, affordable and nutritious food produced to the highest standards should be a right for all. We must not throw that away in the pursuit of free trade.”

food standards infographic

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  • Posted by: Stuart RobertsonPosted on: 18/06/2020 13:28:51

    Comment: The current Government of the day must listen and get the best experts on the job of protecting our food standards, we must also show no impunity to countries that have issues with food standards. We care about what we put inside our bodies, rising rates in cancer and obesity will start to decline as food supply quality and happiness in our lives is key to good health.
  • Posted by: Graham CarrPosted on: 18/06/2020 15:32:31

    Comment: Fantastic getting this right in the public eye & having the likes of Jamie & Jimmy has only helped the british Farmers cases. keep at the Gov they cant sell us down the river
    Thankyou from a farmer