It was very interesting listening to our NFU president Minette Batters speech at the Dorset NFU AGM. She spoke so informatively on everything that is at the heart of British agriculture and all the hot topics that are affecting us farmers.
As you can imagine eggs were at the top, the lack of them and the danger of the cheap imported eggs with the high risk of salmonella. This is a real danger with the lack of border checks which means there is no way of tracking where the eggs are from if a problem occurs. A lot of imported food that enters the UK is packaged here, and then stamped with the Union flag, this is so misleading to the shopper.
In the UK over 90% of eggs are now produced under the Red Lion scheme. To get this stamp, hens have to be vaccinated against salmonella and have a ‘passport’ meaning all eggs are fully traceable. We have the highest standards surrounding food safety and the imported eggs threaten your health and safety. Salmonella is highly dangerous especially for young children, pregnant women and the elderly.
The good news is that because the egg farmers have been telling their stories on social media (and what a power that is), the pressure has mounted on retailers over the unfair egg prices and the supermarket giants have had to back down to the backlash from the farmers. I’m so pleased to see the farmers fighting back, standing up and finally being heard.
She discussed the trade deals that went through with Australia, how unfair it is for British farmers. Yet again there was no one fighting our corner up there in government, although the India trade deal has been put on the back burner for the time being (thank goodness).
It was very obvious that Minette was pulling her hair out with our Government, she is on her fourth Prime Minister since taking office, but she is doing a great job at fighting our British farming battle on the front line. She is trying to make our political leaders realise we need to grow our exports and make this country strong again on food production.
Minette is a farmer and mother as well as leading the NFU and being the voice of the farmers and, my goodness, it’s a tough job that she is doing. Well done Minette!