The President of the NFU will today (Monday) underline the importance of an ambitious trade deal with the EU for UK agriculture.
During a visit to the Yorkshire Dales, Minette Batters will also highlight the significance of the sheep sector to the UK economy.
Batters will spend the day in Skipton meeting local sheep farmers and will officially open a new livestock sales complex at Craven Cattle Mart.
“The trade deals the country is now negotiating seem very far away, with few of us actually exporting or importing directly. But trade is absolutely fundamental to the future of our livestock industry. With so much at stake, the UK Government must adopt a trade policy which prioritises tariff free, frictionless access to the European marketplace.
“This is crucial to underpin market stability – vital not just for farmers but the many wider supply chain businesses that depend on a thriving sheep sector. Clearly there are opportunities to explore new trading agreements with nations around the globe, but we cannot turn our backs on a trading relationship that has, for so long, influenced the development of our livestock industries.
“Farmers are determined to continue delivering for the nation. Whether that’s providing quality, safe, traceable food for everyone, no matter what their budget, or managing iconic landscapes and helping the country achieve its environmental aspirations. But to do this we need the Government and its trade negotiators to understand the very real challenges facing livestock farmers as we head into unchartered waters and be ambitious in their negotiations.”