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Dry land horticulture crops pdf
“In the event of an embargo or trade restrictions, the Department would monitor international markets to assess the impact on the national economy and advise on mitigation measures and export policy changes, as appropriate.”
“The Department would be expected to develop and undertake market research to identify opportunities for production in non-traditional markets such as South-East Asia and North Africa.”
“In the case of a trade embargo, importation would become the primary mechanism to meet demand and the Department’s role would be to assist exporters to identify the areas of supply in which they have potential to increase capacity.”
“The Department’s key role would be to work with the relevant agricultural sector stakeholders to achieve and maintain a range of international production and domestic production capacity.”
"We hope that the proposed changes to support the development of innovative products will assist in the UK’s continued drive to be one of the world’s most competitive food and drink businesses.”
So, as we’ve said, the changes to allow greater freedom to develop innovative products and services and to allow you to sell it in overseas markets is something that was really championed by DEFRA in the post-Brexit context and there’s a lot of detail about that in the consultation papers, so we encourage you to look at the consultation.
The other thing to remember is that there’s a lot of complexity to making any of these changes.
The Department would still have to consider the implications of doing any of these things in terms of whether they could lead to food shortages, that they would be in line with human rights standards and whether the Department’s other roles are taken into account.
There’s also very much a need to consider the potential impact on local and national economies and what your responsibilities are in terms of planning for a scenario where your products might not be available. So there are a lot of areas where you need to do your research and you’d need to be prepared to be able to show that any changes you’re proposing will work.
The other area that’s really important in this context and in the whole of food policy is that we have very high standards around food safety, so we would have to work very closely with the Food Standards Agency to make sure that any products we produced met high standards and if they did not, then we would have to ensure that consumers were aware of the risk associated with that.
The Food Standards Agency has looked very closely at the potential changes and has made a submission to the consultation, so we encourage you to look through the consultation.
The other big thing for you to think about and for you to make decisions on is that, to get the right products to consumers, there’s a need to continue to develop the relationships that we have in the supply chain with farmers, processors and retailers. So it’s important that we continue to encourage the supply of new products from British farmers and continue to work in collaboration to develop food to be able to produce the kind of products that British consumers want.
So it’s really important that you reflect on what you’re going to propose and that you get your proposals to the Government and ask whether the government are going to respond positively to them, because there are a lot of really interesting questions for you to ask, and there is a commitment on the part of the government to be open to that input. So please make sure that you keep all of the information that the department is providing, share that with your members and your colleagues and let us know what they’re saying and how they’re reacting to it.
M.J. FieldMember, Executive Council
Thank you very much, Helen. I had a quick look around on the website and the consultation document, which is quite extensive. So you have time to go through it. There’s an opportunity for members to make their views heard and to have an input in this. The consultation runs until the end of November, so there’s plenty of time to do that. Thank you.
Helen, thank you very much for your presentation. As chair, it’s up to me to ensure that we can all make good use of this time, so can we work together on how we get the most out of this presentation? If members think that they can provide better coverage on the food and health issues that are most important to them, can we do that together?
A.O. ClarkeChair, External Affairs Committee
I have already read Helen’s presentation, which was an extremely interesting overview of the issues we need to address.
We will obviously start from your perspective, Helen, as to what has been said in your presentation. For example, you said that the government is being disingenuous, in terms of how they describe the issue and so on, and you have mentioned that, in the consultation document, they have said that they intend to remove the current levels of free provision. Are we on the same page at all, in terms of the position that we will be taking?
I think we should start on the basis that we will take a position on the issue. I am sure, Helen, that your colleagues in the committee will be in agreement. It is about time that we were discussing the issue. We have been talking about obesity for many, many years. We know that we have high levels of obesity in this country. We know that the government has not got a specific policy in place. So we have a set of recommendations to offer.
Mr Speaker: On a point of order, Minister.
Dr McVey: I apologise.
What I would suggest is that we start our deliberations, if we are to agree a set of recommendations, on the basis of what we heard this morning.
As a result of that, I suggest that we focus on what we want to achieve. I also suggest that we come up with a set of recommendations that we believe would help the government. It is about asking ourselves, What are we looking for? What are we aiming for? Is there a need for a specific policy in place? Is there a need for a specific government policy in place? Is there a need for a specific government policy in place? I suggest that we start from a position of asking that question and, as a result of that, we can make recommendations to the House. If we can agree on that, then I would suggest that we can agree a set of recommendations.