EFRA committee outlines key agri-food concerns ahead of the government’s second annual Farm to Fork Summit

Government committee calls on Downing Street to

Government rural committee calls on Downing Street to address five key farming concerns this year

Cross-party rural select committee EFRA is calling on the government to take measures to strengthen food security and support British farmers before this year is out.

Ahead of Downing Street’s second annual Farm to Fork Summit tomorrow (14 May), EFRA has issued a statement setting out five key areas of concern that it believes Westminster should seek to address in 2024.

The statement, which is attributed to EFRA chair Sir Robert Goodwill (Conservative MP for Scarborough and Whitby), draws together insights from the committee’s recent work and ongoing inquiries.

Topping EFRA’s five-point agenda is ‘food security and the Annual Food Security Index’. EFRA is urging the government to outline details of its promised index, and place the publication of the index on a statutory footing as soon as possible.

Second is future farming policy. EFRA’s concerns centre around government changes to Environmental Land Management schemes (ELMs) and the way in which these changes are communicated to farmers.

Number three is ‘government response to the Shropshire review’. Addressing the workforce challenges faced by the agricultural sector will require “a coherent and effective alignment of farming, education and immigration policy”, EFRA said.

The committee urges the government to press forward with appointing a proposed Tenant Farming Commissioner, in point four.

And EFRA’s fifth and final point concerns fairness in the food supply chain, in which the committee calls on continued government focus on this issue – including considering extending the scope of the Groceries Code Adjudicator.