Oxfordshire Green Party has responded to one of the first national consultations to be held about policies after Brexit. The Environmental Audit Committee of the House of Commons ran a consultation on the future of agriculture and the environment after Brexit. Steve Dawe, Policy Coordinator of Oxfordshire Green Party, compiled the Party's submission to
this consultation. He comments:
The future of agriculture in a country importing more of its food each year is a sensitive issue. We could be increasing useful employment in the UK, but are currently failing to do so. Up to the present, agriculture support of all kinds has been skewed towards larger landowners and has had insufficient regard for raising food quality, biodiversity, climate change, flood protection, eco-tourism or sustainability. It is wrong to think about this issue as purely a matter of agricultural policy: the general failure to protect land is a feature of a defective planning process which empowers development and disempowers all those who would protect the land for other purposes.
Steve Dawe adds:
The opportunity exists to construct an ecologically-sound agricultural system to decrease food imports, improve animal welfare and enhance the landscape for many different uses. The potential to have more employment on the land is very great. But the State must do its part by ensuring support for a changeover to organic agriculture, to add to the number of agricultural cooperatives, and to make access to land easier.