Defra campaign launched to back British farming and advance food exports

The Department for Environment, Farming and Rural Affairs (Defra) has announced the launch of the Great British Food Unit, a new project to advance UK food exports.

Defra, working with UK Trade and Investment (UKTI), have established this new Unit and will incorporate their own global network within British embassies around the world to make the government “better coordinated and more efficient” at promoting UK produce.

It will also be tasked with multiplying the quantity of traineeships in the British food industry and expanding the quantity of UK protected food names from 64 to 200.

The Unit plans to send envoys, including chef’s Ken Hom and Raymond Blanc, Wensleydale Creamery MD David Hartley and Anglesey Sea Salt proprietor Alison Lea-Wilson to attend trade shows and food celebrations to champion British food and farming abroad.

Speaking ahead of the inauguration of the Unit, Environment secretary Liz Truss said: “The UK has risen up out of a dull age in food where time after time taste and quality were overlooked. We are presently changing ourselves and taking our place as a standout amongst the most energizing food cultures on the planet, utilizing a remarkable mix of tradition, innovation and openness.”

The National Farmers Union (NFU) welcomed the launch of the new Defra five-year Great British Food campaign, which incorporates the launch of the new Unit.

NFU President Meurig Raymond said: “We are glad to see Government and leading food pioneers backing this campaign, which will highlight the importance of backing British Farming.

“Anything which can showcase British farming and farmers, not just for they food they produce, but for the value the British farming industry adds to the economy, employment and our beautiful and diverse countryside is a step in the right direction.”

Mr Raymond added: “The British public have told us time and time again that they want to buy British and we hope that this campaign will help them to increasingly have that option in the future.”