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English farmers to be offered ‘largest ever’ grant scheme amid food security concerns

British farmers will soon receive a record grant offering in response to concerns over food security escalated by the impact of Brexit.
Rishi Sunak is set to unveil an extensive grant scheme, including £427 million for technology and productivity improvements, and plans to establish a food security index to ensure the UK's self-sufficiency in food production.

Amidst upheaval due to post-Brexit changes, protests, and increased regulations, the agricultural sector's stability has been questioned. Sunak's commitment aims to retain or improve the country's current 60% self-sufficiency level in food production.

The move follows recent findings that the government has underused available farming funds, leading to inadequate support for nature-focused farming initiatives that took over from the EU's common agricultural policy.

Criticism from the farming community, including Minette Batters, outcoming president of the National Farmers' Union, points to unfulfilled promises regarding trade, deregulation, and financial benefits post-Brexit, with rising costs and policy changes threatening food security and farmer livelihoods.

European farmers have similarly expressed discontent, staging protests over environmental regulations. In the UK, this discontent manifested in demonstrations, such as farmers occupying a Dover supermarket parking area with tractors.

Sunak's new strategy will not only increase funding to farmers but also push for fair treatment and clear contracts for egg producers, with impending regulations for the dairy and pig sectors as well.

In his address at the NFU conference in Birmingham, Sunak will emphasize the government's support for farmers amidst global challenges and their role in innovation and food security.

He will highlight efforts to combat inflation and the increase in farm payments, reinforcing the importance of never taking food security for granted and the intention to back British farming.

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