Farron fights for 'Future...Food...Farmers' campaign
South Lakes MP Tim Farron has added his support to the 'Future... Food... Farmers' campaign launched by the European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA). The campaign aims to raise the public and political awareness of the impending age crisis in the farming industry across Europe.
With negotiations currently underway for the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) for the 2014-2020 period, the CEJA is campaigning to put the issue of generational renewal firmly in the agricultural sector firmly on the agenda. This issue is becoming increasingly important as there is now just 6% of agricultural holders under the age of 35 in the EU. The situation is even more alarming in the UK where that number has dropped to just 2.6% of farmers.
Tim has added his name to the petition which the CEJA intends to take to European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Dacian Ciolos; President of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council and Irish Farm Minister, Simon Coveney; and Member of European Parliament and Chairman of the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, Paolo de Castro in the first quarter in 2013.
Tim has also tabled a motion in Parliament calling on other MPs to do the same to help ensure the future of the farming industry by making it more accessible to young people.
Commenting Tim said: "With the population across Europe expected to increase by 50% and demand for food expected to double over the next 50 years it is absolutely essential that we are doing everything we can to help support and encourage growth within our agricultural industry.
"There is a crisis at the moment as farming is simply not easily accessible to young people, which is putting the industry at great risk of being wiped out over the coming decades.
"We need to address this situation now to ensure that this is taken into account as part of the CAP negotiations so that a special focus is put on encouraging and enabling young people to enter into farming, otherwise all the hard work to 'green' the industry and improve efficiency will be completely wasted."