PM outlines government’s support for farmers in video response to Jeremy Clarkson

Jeremy Clarkson has received a video response from the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnston, in which the PM outlines how the government is supporting British Farming.

By Joanne Knox
Wednesday, 15th June 2022, 2:06 pm

Mr Clarkson, who has been sharing the realities of farming through his hit Amazon Prime show Clarkson’s Farm, said he would like to the see the government “prioritising farming” in the next Parliament.

In a video shared to Twitter and Instagram, Mr Clarkson said he had sent this to Number 10: “We’ve been asked to diversify and, when we try to do that, the local authorities tell us we can’t. That needs addressing”.

Government officials confirmed the Prime Minister had, indeed, seen the video and would be responding, which he has since done.

Jeremy Clarkson

A video posted to the social media platform, TikTok, by @10downingstreet – the official TikTok page for Prime Minister Boris Johnston’s office – features Mr Johnston responding directly to the Chipping Norton farmer.

In it he says: “Hi Jeremy, it’s Boris here.

“I hope very much that you’ve had a chance to have a look at our food strategy.

“And, a lot of that is about backing British farming, backing our own domestic food production, eating more of what we grow here and, of course, growing much more.

“We can do it, what we want to do is back farmers in all sorts of ways.

“Particularly, make sure they have access to the labour they need, but also supporting them when it comes to things like their fuel costs, their fertiliser costs, but supporting them also with innovation.

“And, we’re putting a lot of money into new technology – I’ve just been looking at a machine that can plant 150,000 cabbages, Jeremy, every day.”

He continues: “But what we want to do particularly for farmers, and I know that you care about this a lot, is ensure that we say that when farmers want to develop their property, when they want to turn a barn into a bistro or whatever you want to do, that we make sure that computer does not say no, and we help them, help farmers to make the most of their crops and make the most of their land as well.”

Mr Clarkson, who opened a farm shop on his Diddly Squat Farm back in 2020, welcomed the response from Downing Street.

Sharing the video reply from the Prime Minister, Jeremy tweeted: “Excellent news. Let’s hope the district councils and the silly red trouser people now back down.

“Britain needs food grown in Britain.”

He went on to say people can survive without heat and clothing, but they “cannot live without food” and urged everyone to “support British farming”.

“What we must understand is that the grants farmers got for growing food are going. And we need food,” Mr Clarkson tweeted.

Plans to drive innovation and harness pioneering technology in farming were set out this week as part of the UK Government’s Food Strategy, which will “back farmers by helping to increase domestic production, spread jobs and grow the economy”.

The plans, which include incentives for industry and investment in research, will support farmers to harness this innovation to boost home-grown fruit and vegetable production and, in turn, create new job opportunities across the country.

Environment Secretary, George Eustice, commented: “The food industry is bigger than the automotive and aerospace industries combined, offering employment opportunities, apprenticeships and investment in research and development.

“The strategy we are setting out today will increase the focus on skills in the food sector, and the roles and career pathways available.

“In particular, we will seek to boost our horticulture industry and ensure the expertise needed to develop the sector here in the UK.”