On 3rd November 2015 the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question about the timing of the government’s agri-environment payments.
Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they expect to have fulfilled the agri-environment scheme payments to farmers, and how they will ensure that delays in making such payments do not happen next year. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about support payments to farmers”
“Just as global markets have meant that prices have collapsed, there will come a time when they will suddenly rise dramatically. That is how markets work. The point about milk and dairy is that you cannot simply turn it on again. You cannot keep cows tucked away somewhere just in case. It is vital that we make sure that we continue to have a basic ability to produce food” – Bishop of St Albans, 17/9/15
On 17th September 2015, the Earl of Shrewsbury in a question for short debate asked the Government “what steps they are taking to support the dairy industry in the United Kingdom, in the light of the European Union aid package announced on 7 September.” The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, said:
Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans calls for more protection for dairy farmers”
On 15th September 2015, the Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received answers to five written questions: on the threat to farmers of Mycoplasma Bovis, and on the financial provisions for upland farmers.
Lord Bishop of St Albans:
(1) To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they have evaluated the potential risk of Mycoplasma bovis to the national dairy herd and to milk production; and if not, whether they plan to do so, and within what timescale. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans raises threat of Mycoplasma Bovis and questions provisions for upland farmers”
On 14th September 2015, The Lord Bishop of St Albans asked the Government what plans they have to ensure the sustainability of the United Kingdom’s food supply. He then asked a supplementary question about the provision of financial relief for farmers.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to ensure the sustainability of the United Kingdom’s food supply. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about sustainability of UK food supply”
On Monday 16th March 2015, the Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received answers to two written questions on (i) food security, and (ii) the future of displaced Syrians.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the recent research from the National Farmers’ Union on the decline in food production in the United Kingdom and its impact on food security.
Lord de Mauley (Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs):This Government is committed to helping UK food producers thrive and expand. We are working with the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) and others to support a competitive UK farming industry, including through our £160 million investment in applied research under the agri-tech strategy, as well as the new Rural Development Programme for England, which includes £141 million dedicated to improving agricultural productivity.
Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans – food security and Syria (Written Answers)”
The Earl of Shrewsbury asked Her Majesty’s Government what measures they are taking to improve flood defences in agricultural areas.
The Bishop of St Albans asked a supplementary question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans:
My Lords, the noble Lord will be only too aware of the huge contribution that British agriculture makes to food security. Could he therefore tell us what assessment Her Majesty’s Government have made concerning the risk to food security due to poorly planned flooding amelioration and prevention schemes, which are allowing considerable areas of high-grade agricultural land to be taken out of production due to flooding?
Lord De Mauley:
I am grateful to the right reverend Prelate for coming to see me the other day to talk about these things. There is currently no evidence that flood events such as those experienced in 2007, 2009 or 2012—or, so far, in recent events—represent a threat to food security in the United Kingdom. According to the UK food security assessment, the UK enjoys a high level of food security as a developed, stable economy. I think it is more likely that disruption to transport links could impact access to food supplies, but we are watching this carefully.