Events set to mark out food supply as political priority

In a sign of the increasing importance of food security on the political agenda, three high-level events are set to bring industry and political figures together to discuss the issues that it raises over the coming weeks.

Next week in the House of Commons, the Henry Jackson Society will host a debate on the relationship between food security and national security.

The event will feature "global food security champion" Professor Tim Benton of the University of Leeds as well as Crop Protection Association (CPA) chief executive Dominic Dyer.

It will also see the launch of a report that the association commissioned recently from the society to examine EU crop-protection policy, the regulation of genetically-modified products and agricultural research and development.

The CPA will follow this up by hosting a panel debate on the sustainable intensification of agriculture at its AGM in London on 17 May. The meeting will also consider whether food production can be increased by 80 per cent by 2050.

Among those lined up to feature on the panel are shadow Defra minister Mary Creagh and NFU president Peter Kendall.

Then on 23 May, the Westminster Food & Nutrition Network has organised a seminar on the future of global food and farming in light of last year's Foresight report. Its brief is to look at what impact the report has made on policy and practice in the industry.

The seminar will be chaired by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Science & Technology in Agriculture chair George Freeman MP and shadow environment minister Barry Gardiner. Contributions will again be heard from Benton and Dyer.

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