The UK food industry showed its total support for the farming and food policy commission report released this week in the UK. Sylvia Jay, Director General of the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) said:"Sir Don's recommendations provide a much-needed stimulus for all of us inthe food chain. FDF supports his view that everyone must play a part:there is plenty to be done by Government as well the industry if we are tobring about the Commission's vision of a profitable and sustainable foodand drink industry in this country which serves consumers' needs."
The FDF comment follows the release this week of a long-awaited blueprint on the future of English farming presented by Commission on Food and Farming, chaired by former Meat and Livestock Commission head Sir Donald Curry.
The FDF in particular welcomed the Commission proposals in the to : establish a centre which would study the whole food chain to identify inefficiencies and obstacles to competitiveness; inefficiencies and obstacles to competitiveness; reconsider research and development priorities; review the Retailer Code of Practice in two years; and make the whole food chain more competitive and equitably profitable including reviewing direct production and other subsidies.
Jay ,however, did feel the clear need to point out that food manufacturers, possibly against their will, often have to source raw ingredients abroad.
"On the subject of sourcing local produce, the food and drink manufacturingindustry has to compete in a global market and therefore buys some of itsraw ingredients according to price or quality rather than country oforigin.
UK food manufacturers buy two thirds of UKagricultural produce . We export £8.8 billion worth of goods each year, much of which contains UK agricultural produce.
With a gross output of nearly £65bn (€106.2bn) the UK food and drink manufacturing industry accounts for almost 14 per cent of the total manufacturing sector. The FDF is the voice of the industry.