Thank you for contacting me about farmers and food retailers, and the debate on 22nd January. As former Secretary of State for DEFRA, I’m fully aware of the concerns and the work already underway to address the issues.
I know that the Government is committed to working with businesses and organisations across the food supply chain, including farmers, manufacturing and distribution businesses and retailers, to ensure that we have a thriving food sector in the UK. I welcome that representatives from the whole food supply chain came together at Downing Street in May 2023 to identify ways in which the Government and industry can work together to boost growth, drive innovation and improve sustainability in the food sector.
The Government has launched a review to improve fairness in the fresh produce supply chain, supporting British farmers and growers to receive a fair price for their products. This review delivers on a key commitment made by the Prime Minister at the Farm to Fork Summit in May and will seek the views of industry on issues including the fairness of contracts between producers and purchasers in the sector, and how supply chain data can be used to support transparency in the negotiation process.
The review, which is open until 22 February, can be found here:
You can read the Minister’s response to the recent debate, here: https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2024-01-22/debates/F4E6009C-23CF-4160-8575-AC2A6ED0F9CD/GroceriesSupplyCodeOfPractice