Message from the Editor

Women picking beans_Photo_K. Stefanova_USAID_flickr

“Imports – such as Kenyan green beans and Fairtrade tea and coffee – provide vital income for communities in the developing world”. David Wilson, manager of Duchy Home FarmPhoto_K. Stefanova_USAID

'Greener by miles' Telegraph articleIt worries me sometimes to read, hear or see those who should know better, telling us how we could produce much more food here in Great Britain so that we could replace food imports and banish food miles.

Most of us in the food industry know that the land area in this country already supports a larger population that most if not all of the countries in Europe.

A recent suggestion was that Scotland could vastly increase meat production. Excellent meat, but the Highlands do not have much suitable grazing with so much granite around. Another proposal was to double fruit production – which would actually mean higher prices since we cannot compete with the vast amounts of excellent quality imports that arrive by the shipload from Canada, South Africa and Australia.

Can we double the vegetable production in this country. Why not dig up all the golf courses, bowls greens, tennis courts, parks and football pitches just as was considered during the Second World War. I know that because my father, Raymond Binsted sat on the committee of five people with the Minister of Food to find ways to feed our nation under siege.

Plenty of people out there want to tell our industry what to do – most of them with little knowledge of how UK PLCs largest industry by far, operates.

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