HROC (agency) - Kubota
Farminguk
30 August 2016 | Online since 2003
Scrutton Bland


31 December 2013 23:40:33 |Bees and Beekeeping,News,NFU

NFU President's New Year message: Back British farmers


In his final New Year’s message before stepping down as NFU President, Peter Kendall has stressed how farming depends on a healthy, stable environment.
“With parts of the UK again under the cosh after a stormy Christmas I am reminded once more of the influence, not only of the weather but also of the rest of the environment on farming. I know farmers wish all those householders suffering from the recent floods and horrendous weather a better start to 2014.

“Looking back over the past year, more records have been broken for extreme weather around the world. Record temperatures in Austria, blizzards which killed nearly 100,000 cattle in the USA and, of course, possibly the most powerful tropical cyclone to make landfall in recorded history, smashing into the Philippines and killing 6,000 people; these are just some examples. And farmers have also been at the wrong end of extreme weather affecting our potential to grow crops and rear livestock around the world.

“For me, this reinforces the delicate balance that exists between mankind and our precious environment. While it is certainly right not to attribute any one weather event to climate change, the increasing frequency of extreme weather events around the world is in line with scientists’ predictions. That is why adaption to climate change and building resilience is essential for us all.

“Farmers already accept without reservation our dependency on a thriving, stable environment to deliver on our crucial role; to produce more food in the coming years. Over recent weeks there has been a recurring theme from some environmental groups that farmers at best fail to recognise this and at worst wilfully undermine this critical interdependence.
“However nothing could be further from the truth. For example, what we do for treasured landscapes, like Britain’s national parks. Without extensive sheep and cattle grazing the heather and grass moors would revert to rough scrub and woodland. Public access would be difficult and key wildlife species like the red grouse that depend on grazing would be lost.
“Farmers shape the lowlands too – over 40 per cent of hedges are trimmed to retain a berry crop for over-wintering birds, every farmer is required to complete an annual soil protection review and Defra statistics show there have been 53,000 more ponds created in the past decade.
“We should also contest farming’s alleged impact on wildlife. So I’d like to mention some positive facts: The brown hare has a stable population, not declining as is often reported. The otter has returned to every English county. And few people look behind the headlines to find that wild bird populations have changed little in the past 40 years. Even the 19 so-called ‘official’ farmland birds show contradictory trends – there are increases in Goldfinch, Stock Dove, Whitethroat, Woodpigeon and Jackdaw.
“A healthy, thriving environment is vital to the very practice of farming. This is why farmers and growers continue to strive to make improvements. From the quality of our air and soil, ensuring our water is free from pollution and safeguarding our much needed access, to caring for abundant wildlife including bees which are essential for pollination to a very large part of farming.
“Demonstrating our careful stewardship of the countryside to our customers and those visiting our magnificent landscape will continue to build trust, trust that is so important if we are to build the much-needed capacity and infrastructure of British farming over the coming years.
“It is why I ask British consumers to continue backing British farming because we can and will continue to deliver. I ask that they seek out high quality British products when they visit food outlets in 2014; in return by forming a long term pact between consumers, retailers, food service and farmers, we can deliver the sustainable farming that is going to be vital to feed the UK’s rapidly growing population, and protect our safe and trusted food chain against the backdrop of increasingly unpredictable weather.”

Download

1 Comment

loginuserlogo
Name

Please enter your name


Email

Please enter your email

Please enter valid email


Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment has been submitted successfully. Please wait for admin approval.


Comments


Canada | 26 August 2016
Canadian beef exports to EU in limbo over E. coli dispute

If differences of opinion over food safety practices are not resolved, the big promises of a new European market for Canadian beef may be a pipe dream. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreemen...


India | 26 August 2016
GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain

A government panel has cleared commercial use of what would be India's first genetically modified (GM) food crop, but politicians still have to give final approvals amid wide-spread public opposition....


USA | 26 August 2016
USDA buys $20 million in cheese from dairy farms

Moving to bolster dairy farmers who are struggling to cope with price declines, the Agriculture Department announced Tuesday it is spending $20 million - on 11 million pounds of cheese. A taxpayer ...


France | 26 August 2016
Lactalis talks with French milk producers end with no deal

A meeting between Europe's largest dairy group Lactalis and French milk producers requesting a rise in prices ended in a deadlock after 10 hours of negotiations, sources close to the talks said. ...


USA | 26 August 2016
California farmers turn to sewers for water

California's prolonged drought is forcing Central Valley farmers to scramble for water to irrigate crops. They have to be creative. One agency is even turning to a sewage plant to meet demand. Just...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed


Top stories you may have missed
FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A new survey has revealed that the vast majority of British consumers belie...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The British public are overwhelmingly in favour of keeping or strengthening...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The sustained recovery of pig prices since the spring has come at a time wh...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A World Trade Organisation (WTO) panel has declared the Russian import ban ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A new study has linked oilseed rape crops grown from neonicotinoid-treated ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Philip Hammond is to guarantee billions of pounds of UK government investme...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Access to the foreign labour market is 'critical', according the chief exec...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The Tenant Farmers Association has said the National Trust's vision for a p...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Ulster farmers will 'not lie down and wave the white flag' when Brexit nego...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The cost of rural crime to the UK economy costs £42.5 million a year, accor...


closeicon
Username
Password