“Backing farmers” is the focus of the government’s long-awaited Food Strategy for England.
The strategy announced today has been described by critics as “half-baked”.
It follows a landmark review of the food system by restaurant owner, Henry Dimbleby, who said only about half of his recommendations had been taken on.
But the pledge to “back farmers” has been welcomed by the National Farmers’ Union and the Soil Association.
The report recommends investment in automated farming methods to improve productivity.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was “supporting great British farming” and putting money into modernisation and innovation.
The food strategy puts a focus on home-grown food, including strengthening supply chains and boosting food production.
- £270 million will be invested in technology to increase productivity and profitability;
- The government will consult on an ambition for 50% of public sector food spend to go on food produced locally or certified to higher standard; and
- A framework will be published next year on how to help farmers grow more food while also meeting legally-binding targets to halt climate change and nature loss.
Mr Dimbleby said the policy document was not detailed enough to be called a strategy.