McDonald’s UK and The Prince’s Countryside Fund team up to support UK farming families

January 9, 2020

McDonald’s UK has entered into a three-year partnership with The Prince’s Countryside Fund, supporting the charity’s work in improving the economic resilience of farming families.

The Prince’s Countryside Fund, set up by HRH The Prince of Wales in 2010, works with farming and rural communities throughout the UK, and to date has provided over £10 million in grant and initiative funding.

Since 2016, the Fund’s flagship scheme, The Prince’s Farm Resilience Programme, has supported over 900 farming families to improve their business skills with free training and professional advice, in 60 locations across the British Isles. The programme has a track record of success, with evidence of significant behavioral change occurring – 91% of participating families improve their communication, and 89% have a better understanding of costs as a result of taking part.

McDonald’s works with over 23,000 British and Irish farmers, the partnership with the Prince’s Countryside Fund cements the business’ commitment to their futures, as well as the future of the farming industry. The partnership will provide vital assistance to farming communities over the next three years, sponsoring the new ‘Beef It Up’ workshop. McDonald’s is also supporting the Fund’s wider work in helping UK farmers prepare for the process of transition so that thousands of family livestock farms across the UK can be helped to provide better business practices, environmental measures and animal welfare training and advice.

‘Beef it Up’ is a UK-wide group workshop focusing on environmental, livestock and business management for small and medium sized farms. Aimed at supporting the farms most in need, these workshops will underline the future business opportunities for farmers, breaking down the barriers to accessing environmental land management schemes, and promote safe, environmental, and wildlife-friendly farming practices. The aim of these workshops is that they will help to bridge the perceived divide between environmental management and farming, helping to drive a culture shift in British agriculture.

McDonald’s already has a proven track record in sharing knowledge through Farm Forward – an agriculture programme with three aims; to develop skills and knowledge in the industry, raise animal welfare standards and encourage environmental improvements to help create a sustainable future for British and Irish farming.

The partnership marks the latest step in McDonald’s sustainability journey and together with The Prince’s Countryside Fund and the business’ suppliers, the partnership will create fresh new solutions to the big challenges the industry is facing, promoting innovation that aims to futureproof the sector.

Claire Saunders, Director of The Prince’s Countryside Fund said: “I am thrilled that the Fund will be working again with McDonald’s, in order to help us improve the prospects of family farm businesses across the UK at such a critical time.”

Nina Prichard, Head of Sustainable and Ethical Sourcing at McDonald’s UK & Ireland said: “Our supply chain is absolutely critical to our success – we couldn’t serve the food that we’re famous for without the support and hard work of 23,000 British and Irish farmers. This partnership is an important move in supporting them and securing their future – farming is part of the fabric of our society, and we are delighted to be working with The Prince’s Countryside Fund on this resilience progamme.