Kendall prioritises food security at AHDB event

New chairman of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board Peter Kendall has reiterated his desire to see the board help UK farmers produce more, and the UK import less, in a bid to boost food security.

Kendall and Eustice
Kendall and Eustice

At an event at AHDB headquarters at Stoneleigh designed to introduce both Kendall and farming minister George Eustice to levy board staff, Kendall said: "One of the biggest global challenges we face is food security. Knowing this, UK farmers need to be growing more. Instead, we are growing less and importing more. I want AHDB to help to reverse this."

By contrast earlier this month Eustice was criticised for his reportedly relaxed approach to UK self sufficiency before the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee.

He told the committee:  "Food security is not just about self-sufficiency at a national level. Actually having open markets and free trade globally has got a very important role to play in making sure we have food security."

He added: "We are not promoting anything directly in terms of consumers – we are not supporting any advertising campaigns."

At the AHDB event, Eustice said, "It is vitally important that we all concentrate on addressing the future needs of levy payers. I have been encouraged by the way AHDB is becoming a more focused and efficient organisation."
 
He added: "There is an important question about whether AHDB should be more of a single entity rather than operating as six separate sectors and I’m pleased that the Board has already started to look at this.

Finally he acknowledged the expertise of the AHDB in "exports, knowledge transfer and R&D".

Citing innovaiton in the soft fruit sector which has meant home-grown strawberries "hit our shelves in the first week of March this year" Kendall said the AHDB had a "great story to tell" with "great examples of our levy-payers’ levy in action". 

HDC chairman Neil Bragg welcomed the minister's recognition of the role of R&D, and the "impact HDC funded work through the development of innovation in the soft fruit sector specifically identified by the new AHDB chairman.


 



 

 


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Is the pilot seasonal workers scheme 'a shambles'?

Is the pilot seasonal workers scheme 'a shambles'?

Business planning - How to identify consumer trends

Business planning - How to identify consumer trends

Listen to your customers and keep an eye on innovators inside and outside the industry, says Neville Stein.

How concerned should growers be about access to irrigation water?

How concerned should growers be about access to irrigation water?


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +

Horticulture Week Top UK FRUIT PRODUCERS

See our exclusive RANKING of UK Fruit Producers by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS.

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Horticulture Week Top UK GLASSHOUSE SALAD GROWERS

See our exclusive RANKING of UK Salad Growers by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS.

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production
 

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon