Foresight report on global food and farming is ‘wake-up call’ to government, says CLA.

24 October 2013

The CLA today (Monday, 24 January 2011) said the Foresight report on Global Food and Farming Futures - which asks farmers to grow more food at less cost to the environment - should serve as a "wake-up" call to government.

The Association said it agreed with the study's conclusion that to meet the food and environmental security challenges facing the world will require a sustainable intensification of global agriculture.

CLA President William Worsley said: "The Foresight report has assembled the evidence and the leading thinking globally on the problem of food insecurity which is already suffered by a horrifyingly large number of people. It must be taken seriously. Most of the world's 'food insecure' live in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. However, this does not mean that Europe has no role.

"For years now the debate in Europe has been about how to achieve a mix of productive and competitive farming on the most fertile land while at the same time reducing negative environmental impacts and increasing the delivery of wildlife, landscape, climate, soil and water protection – services only farmers can deliver."

The CLA President added: "The worry is that successive British governments have grossly underestimated the scale of the resource required to meet this dual food and environmental challenge. We hope this research will act as a wake-up call to the Government to take a more enlightened stance to helping farmers to maximise Europe's contribution to global food security.

"The major lesson for Europe's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is it must help maintain and increase Europe's food production capacity, while arranging to pay farmers for the environmental services for which the market will not pay. This is the core of the debate on the reform of the CAP currently underway, and what, we believe, the Coalition Government should support."

Read the full Foresight Global Food and Farming Futures report at: http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/bispartners/foresight/docs/food-and-farming/11-546-future-of-food-and-farming-report.pdf