LOCAL MP Rebecca Pow was on Wednesday (September 13) supporting Back British Farming Day, celebrating farming values and highlighting the role farmers played in feeding the nation as well as contributing to rural communities and wider society.
Ms Pow attended a reception in Parliament hosted by the NFU before going on to a reception in No 10 Downing Street to show her support for the farmers she represents.
The events cane as the Government announced a package of measures to help people ‘buy British’ and provide farmers with the cashflow they needed to invest in their businesses.
Ms Pow was supporting Environment Secretary Thérèse Coffey in backing calls for industry-led action to signpost customers to ‘buy British’ when they shopped online and will support campaigns to endorse the taste and quality of home-grown meat and dairy products.
The Government also announced farmers who produced sustainable British food under new environmental land management schemes would be able to use them to help meet public procurement standards, benefiting British farmers and also allowing the public sector to benefit from more excellent British food.
Ms Pow said: “I strongly support our farming community and was pleased to attend these events in Westminster.
“Coming from a long line of farming stock, I fully appreciate the role our farmers play come rain or shine to put food on our tables and to care for the environment and they deserve to be celebrated.
“I am especially pleased to support the drive to encourage buying ‘British’ and where possible procuring from our local farmers.
“This is an exciting time of change for our farming industry as we transition away from the EU system that simply paid farmers for owning or managing land to our new schemes that pay them for delivering public services such as healthy soil, reducing use of conventional pesticides, providing water services, and much more.
“The new Sustainable Farming Incentive will soon be underway, and I would urge all appropriate farmers to consider applying.
“And, still on a farming note, I am delighted that £220,000 has recently been awarded to a number of farmers in Taunton Deane who applied for the first round of the Animal Health and Welfare Equipment and Technology grants.
“This will help farmers to invest in items ranging from livestock handling equipment to automated monitoring systems in efforts to improve animal health, boost productivity, and encourage sustainable food production.
“In all, a total of £20 million has been awarded to farmers across Taunton Deane in farming support payments, helping our farming community to improve productivity, remain sustainable, and help protect our environment.”