Ulster Unionist MEP Jim Nicholson has said that UK agricultural policy post-Brexit must reflect the fact that food security is a public good.
Commenting Mr Nicholson said:“Since his appointment as Defra Secretary of State Michael Gove has consistently indicated that a new system of ‘public money for public goods’ will replace the CAP in the UK post-Brexit. The public goods regularly highlighted by Mr Gove include; environmental enhancement and animal welfare, both producers and consumers alike recognise the importance of these issues. In my view food security should also be considered as a public good and this must be reflected in future agricultural policy.”
Mr Nicholson, who has written to the Defra Secretary on this issue, concluded: “What replaces the CAP needs to support domestic agriculture. This actually goes beyond agricultural policy, UK food security is a cross-cutting issue of strategic, national importance.
“Mr Gove has pledged to ensure that food and farming will be placed at the heart of policy making. Treating food security as a public good within future agricultural policy is an opportunity to make good on that pledge.”