Food policy under attack from Labour

Shadow farming minister Mary Creagh has attacked the Government over delays in setting up a groceries code adjudicator, a failure to "buy British" and the abolition of the Agricultural Wages Board (AWB).

Speaking at the Oxford Farming Conference on 4 January, Creagh said: "Government delays mean that the adjudicator will probably not be up and running until 2014-15."

She added: "The Government spends £2bn a year on food and is well placed to support British farmers and food standards through procurement. Yet Defra's figures show that the department bought less than a third of its food from British sources in 2011."

On the abolition of the AWB, Creagh said: "It will take £90m in sick and holiday pay from low-paid workers over the next 10 years." She also complained that the Government lacked a sustainable food strategy.


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