The possibility of the UK crashing out of the EU with ‘no deal’ has raised the spectre of potential food shortages. Sustain comments, urging a fair, measured and well-planned approach to avoid unnecessary food disruption and anxiety, particularly for the 8.4 million people in the UK already living with food insecurity.
Leading marine NGOs have issued a rallying cry: write to Michael Gove now to call for better post-Brexit fishing policy
Save the date(s): This is an extract from the Sustain Brexit Forum newsletter. Sign up to receive regular updates (monthly or bi-monthly) at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit/
The possibility of the UK crashing out of the EU with ‘no deal’ has dominated the past few febrile weeks on the Brexit scene. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, examining the implications of a 'no deal' Brexit for food, farming and fishing. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
Farm support, access to farm labour and the future of animal welfare are just some of the issues being addressed in UK farm policy. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
The Government's plan for replacing the EU Common Fisheries Policy has at last been published - find out more here. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
How can we use the whole resource of public and private money and social capital to support thriving food, farming and countryside? This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
A new Environment Act, green watchdog and institutions to regulate chemicals are all needed - and must be robust enough to defend our health and the natural environment. Just some of the issues being addressed in UK environment policy. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
The new UK Trade Bill, preparations for future trade deals, and US food standards have been dominating the media and Parliament. With so much to play for in food, farming and fishing, read more about the latest developments in UK trade policy. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexit
Farm support, access to farm labour and the future of animal welfare are just some of the issues being addressed in UK farm policy. This is an extract from Sustain's Brexit Forum newsletter, June/July 2018. Sign up to receive news updates monthly or bi-monthly at: www.sustainweb.org/brexi
Sustain is shortlisted for its work on Brexit (PR Team category), SUGAR SMART (Campaigning Team category) and for the Children's Health Fund (Corporate Partnership with a Retailer category). The winners will be announced on 3 October 2018.
In a new briefing out today (25 July 2018) the Sustain alliance makes the case for bringing in a new body in England to negotiate wages and better conditions for agriculture workers.
The latest Food Brexit briefing from the Food Research Collaboration at City University (published 23 July) includes the explosive claim that the government is planning to suspend food safety measures in favour of waving through perishable goods, if we fail to secure a Brexit deal with the EU.
Wildlife and Countryside Link (who are part of the Sustain alliance) have co-ordinated 25 charities to challenge the Prime Minister to be more ambitious in the scope and detail of the newly announced Environment Bill.
Academics, public health advocates and food and farming specialists have joined forces to call on the Prime Minister and her Cabinet, formally to recognise public health as a public good in UK agriculture policy.
Patti Rundall OBE, policy director of Baby Milk Action, gives an eye-witness account of US government bullying tactics to prevent global efforts to protect breastfeeding and restrict misleaing marketing of breastmilk substitutes. It wasn't "fake news", she says - it really happened - "I know, I was there".
Nourish Scotland (who are part of Sustain) believe that recent government publications on the future of Scottish agriculture give no clear direction for farming after Brexit.
Recent moves by the World Health Organisation to encourage breastfeeding across the globe were reportedly blocked by the United States of America. Drawing on decades of research showing that mother’s milk is the healthiest for children the resolution ran into trouble when the US, apparently responding to the financial interests of infant formula manufacturers, objected.
The UK Government has today committed to negotiate with the EU for "a common rule book for all goods including agri-food" - Sustain's chief executive Kath Dalmeny welcomes the aspiration and raises concerns about the detail.
Policy work these days can be stifling; keeping you stuck to a desk, locked in meetings and shuffling around Westminster. It is only a matter of time before we hear news of Brexit fatigue or even burn out. The sheer volume of news and Bills and lobbying requirements makes it hard to go out and see what is happening in the field and talk to ‘real people’.
Replying to a parliamentary question prompted by the Real Bread Campaign’s latest loaf labelling crusade, the Minister of State at Defra has rejected any improvement “in the interests of reducing unnecessary regulatory burden”.
Sustain Alliance members Compassion in World Farming released a Brexit briefing this week, spelling out the gaps in animal welfare standards between the UK and its likely future trading partners. They also specified the measures needed to be put in place to protect animal welfare.
Do you think that shoppers and small, independent local bakeries deserve better protection from the effects of incomplete loaf labelling and potentially misleading marketing?
A detailed Which? survey on attitudes to Brexit also found that nine out of ten consumers think maintaining food standards after Brexit is important.
The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agroecology event on ‘The Environmental Watchdog: The Legal Status of Post-Brexit Environmental Protections’ will be held on 4 July. Find out how to book.
Sustain member the Faculty of Public Health launch a blueprint on how the UK can collaborate with Europe to defend against infectious diseases after Brexit.
An investigation by Sustainable Fish Cities, and published today in the Independent, has found that UK fishers are losing out on markets worth an estimated £62 million because UK companies are buying-in sustainable fish from overseas.
On publication today (6 June) of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee Report on The future for food, farming and the environment, Sustain’s Farming Campaign Coordinator, Vicki Hird, says
British microbiologists have found that chlorine-washing food does not kill listeria and salmonella food poisoning bugs. The technique has been the cause of controversy relating to US and UK food standards, especially chlorine-washed chicken.
This half-day seminar, 11 July 2018, will examine the question: ‘Public health as a ‘public good’ from agriculture: How can we win support for this principle from UK policy makers?’
Stormont is considering a direct payment for Northern Ireland farmers, but at a level "significantly below" current EU subsidies.
The UK Fisheries Bill, due for introduction to Parliament in 2018, needs to have a strong overall vision, to make sure fishers are guaranteed a bright, sustainable future.
Sustain has submitted evidence to the Environmental Audit Committee ‘Sustainable Seas’ inquiry, urging government to make more use of the very significant buying power of the public and food business sectors to secure a sustainable future for fish stocks and marine ecosystems.
Sustain has raised renewed concerns about the UK’s commitment to end overfishing, as leading European fishery policy experts highlight the need for all EU members to accelerate progress towards their agreed 2020 deadline.
The Scottish Parliament voted unanimously on 15 May to withhold consent for the government’s proposed EU Withdrawal Bill. The move airs concerns that the Bill represents a power grab by Westminster over devolved policy areas such as agriculture and fisheries, as policy-setting responsibilities return to the UK from the EU.
The House of Commons Library has produced a range of helpful documents, including this recently updated Brexit Timeline, covering the period 2016 to 2020.
Three separate parliamentary committees - as well as supermarket and food manufacturing associations – and former government trade advisors – have warned that the UK is ill-prepared for future trade deals.
The House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Select Committee has said the Government should prioritise a free trade agreement with the EU to protect the UK food manufacturing industry and hundreds of thousands of British jobs.
Food Brexit is a major food industry conference that will take place in London on 1 November 2018, with Sustain’s chief executive Kath Dalmeny speaking in a session focusing on the opportunities, risks and challenges of implementing a US-UK trade deal.
The UK government has launched a consultation on environmental governance after Brexit, widely received with disappointment by environment and wildlife groups, with one industry commentator saying that it shows “the misperception that regulations are bad for growth still stands in the way of good environmental policymaking”.
Members of the Sustain alliance including the Soil Association and LEAF met in Belfast this month to agree on a position for agriculture after Britain has left the EU.
Justice Secretary David Gauke announced yesterday the government’s intention to put offenders to work in sectors likely to be hit by the UK leaving the European Union. This could include catering, retail, manufacturing and agriculture.
Secretary of State Michael Gove MP has said that the UK would accept US food standards “over my dead body”, in an interview with good food advocate Rosie Boycott at the Hay Festival, 2018.
The HMRC has told parliament’s Treasury Committee that a high-tech customs option for future UK imports and exports could cost UK businesses up to £20 billion per year. Agri-food currently represents 11% of trade flows by value between the UK and the EU, so food manufacturers and farmers could expect to bear some of such additional costs.
The Health Select Committee’s Inquiry on childhood obesity took evidence from several government ministers yesterday. During proceedings, Public Health Minister Steve Brine commented that Brexit was an opportunity ‘to take back control’ of our food labelling.
On 22 May Michael Gove announced plans to tackle sources of air pollution, saying the Government wants to clamp down on things like coal burning and ammonia from farms. Sustain responds
Media reports suggest that the EU has “leapt ahead of the UK in the pursuit of free trade deals with Australia and New Zealand” after member states gave the green light for talks to start within weeks.
Former UK shadow Chancellor and now Harvard research fellow Ed Balls has published a research paper (co-written with fellow researcher Peter Sands) on the latest thinking of senior trade negotiation officials in the US and UK. You can read the full paper here.
Country Land and Business Associates (CLA) has proposed a new Land Management Contract for the payment for delivery of public benefits.
The House of Lords has voted in favour of 15 significant amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill, set to return to the House of Commons within weeks. Several are highly relevant to standards for food, farming and fishing.
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Projects & campaigns
Better Hospital Food
Children's Food Campaign
Food and Farming Policy
Food co-ops toolkit
Good Food For London
London Food Link
Planning Food Cities
Real Bread Campaign
Roots to work
Save Our Antibiotics
Sugar Smart UK
Sustainable Fish Cities
Sustainable Food Cities
The Big Dig
Urban Food Fortnight