Parliamentary committee to ask experts about recent food shortages and wider issues

The Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) is set to hear evidence on the extent to which the UK food system is impacted by climate change and biodiversity decline.

The session, which takes place on 22 March and will be broadcast on Parliament TV, will explore the impact climate change and biodiversity loss can have on the availability of food on supermarket shelves.

As part of the inquiry, the EAC will be quizzing academics and representatives of the food sector on recent shortages. 

The first panel will explore academic studies on the resilience of food amid the effects of climate change and biodiversity loss, and the impact eating less meat and dairy could have on the UK’s ability to farm sustainably and meet its net-zero targets.

The government’s Food Strategy and proposed Environmental Land Management scheme and Land Use Strategy will also be considered.

Speakers include City University London’s Professor Tim Lang, Dr Monica Zurek of the Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford, and Dr Elizabeth Boakes, research fellow at the Centre for Biodiversity & Environment Research, University College London.

The second panel will include representatives from McCain Food and the Food & Drink Federation alongside the founder of Riverford Organics, Guy Singh-Watson.

Issues the EAC is likely to explore with the witnesses include the impact of extreme weather in 2022/23 on supply chains, the government’s Food Resilience Industry Forum, and water scarcity.