Gove praises Fund at NFU Conference

February 20, 2018

The Rt Hon Michael Gove MP gave the keynote speech during the politics session at the NFU conference today, 20th February 2018.

During his speech, he once again name checked The Prince’s Countryside Fund: “The more connected we all are to the countryside, the more we know and appreciate what’s involved in farming and food production, the more understanding there will be of the need to value and support what farmers do.

“The work of organisations like The Prince’s Countryside Fund which support smaller farms, especially those in more challenging areas, needs to be supported. I firmly believe that supporting those farmers who help keep rural life, and economies, healthy is a public good.”

Claire Saunders, Director of The Prince’s Countryside Fund said: “We are thrilled that once again the hard work of The Prince’s Countryside Fund has been recognised at another major event in the agricultural calendar, the NFU Conference.

“Our work in supporting family farms is critical in ensuring that we have a thriving agricultural sector and rural economy in the UK. We are committed to promoting and building networks of farmers, through grants and initiatives such as The Prince’s Farm Resilience Programme that we run, and our work in supporting existing groups such as The Farmer Network in Cumbria, The Exmoor Hill Farming Network in Devon, and the Farming Community Network.”

Mr Gove also spoke about the need:

  • to help farmers and food producers to develop resilience in the face of change
  • for investment in education and training, as well as employment for future generations
  • for changes to farm inspections (Mr Gove announced a comprehensive review)
  • for incentivising greater collaboration between farmers, particularly to help smaller mixed and livestock farmers deal with market volatility
  • for greater access to 4G and broadband in rural areas, and the potential to divert money that was going to the EU to provide this.

The full text of his speech can be read here.