Exports of beef, lamb and pork to new overseas markets has fuelled a growth in farming by one quarter, a Westcountry MP has said
The agricultural industry made £8.84 billion in 2011, up 25% on the previous year, according to the NFU. Food exports also grew by 11%, making food and drink the fourth largest export sector for the UK.
This information was announced at the same time when the British dairy industry has been affected by price cuts for milk suppliers.
Neil Parish, Conservative MP for Tiverton and Honiton, said, “The figures show that the beef and lamb sector has done a lot of exporting, creating a lot of income for the country and jobs. And that's what we need to be doing to help the dairy sector – more exports. We need to be exporting our way out of the recession and into growth, and the farming and food sector is doing its bit.”
Peter Kendall, the president of the NFU, added, “No one now seriously doubts the need for this country to have an efficient, productive, environmentally-conscious British farming sector, or the value that it, and we as farmers and growers, can deliver on all fronts.”