Send us your pictures, video, news and views by texting DST to 80360 or email us
Chefs urged to source food from the UK
3:00pm Friday 6th September 2013 in Farming
SOME of the country’s most influential chefs have been urged to source and serve more British food and back British farming.
Adam Quinney, NFU vice-president, told an audience of 250 food service professionals that they were in a prime position to help reverse the decline of the nation’s food self-sufficiency which has fallen to 62pc.
He was addressing the Craft Guild of Chefs Universal Cookery and Food Festival in Hampshire on Wednesday.
Mr Quinney said the foodservice was a diverse market taking in everything from schools, hospitals, high-street chains, hotels and restaurants, oil rigs and football stadiums, and Michelin-starred restaurants.
“The sector is an important customer of British farming. You buy £10bn-worth of food every year and some of that is British.
But there are definitely opportunities for that to increase and get more British food on more British plates,” he said.
“As caterers serving the best standard of food you can, I know quality and value is important to you, as well as knowing that the product you buy has been safely produced to high animal welfare and environmental standards.
“Let’s remember all British food is world class, 75pc of which is inspected under the Red Tractor Farm assurance scheme, and our recent Back British farming campaign showed that the support from the public is there.”
Mr Quinney said farmers were also aware of the need to manage natural resources with water and soil health being the most important.
“Farmers want thriving farms to pass on to the next generation so managing natural resources is imperative. What we want to see is both sectors functioning side-by-side in a marketplace that values both the quality of each product and supports British farming.”
Andy Foot, NFU beef group chairman, said farmers needed the confidence to invest in the future and help deliver a prosperous food industry.
“If we don’t get that, then farm businesses will be lost and imports will fill the gap left behind,” he said, “I don’t want farming to go the same way as so many other industries in this country.
“Agriculture is one of the few remaining great British institutions that contributes to our landscape, environment, economy, culture and tourism.
“That’s why I would urge all chefs who care about British food to pledge their support today to our industry, sign up to the Charter and Back British farming.”
Comments are closed on this article.