Farmers combine to give us food security
I am writing as a follow up to my original letter which received criticism in your June issue. I’m responding as I feel strongly that it is important that people are educated on UK agriculture and the food security that farms provide for us. The letter writer was not wrong in saying that some intensive agriculture practices can have negative impacts on the environment and are not sustainable. This is largely due to many people needing affordable food options, forcing farms to intensify and increase productivity through being under huge financial pressure.
This is not the choice or fault of any farmer and my point was that along with managing grassland and wild areas (huge sequesters of carbon), farmers are out digging ponds, planting trees, wildflowers and hedgerows, installing solar panels, bird boxes and signing up for schemes and grants all aimed at positive changes for the environment. Agriculture is the smallest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the UK in comparison to residential, energy supply, business and transport sectors, (source: NFU). Penny Dunn