According to a report by The Eco Experts, 15% of species in the UK are at risk of extinction. This includes 43% of birds and 12% of invertebrates, such as spiders, honey bees and ants. While 12% may sound fairly low, especially with the UK having 403 species of invertebrates, many of those at risk […]
Author: George Richmond
George has grown up on an organic dairy farm in Gloucestershire. Currently he is a history undergraduate student at Fitzwilliam College in Cambridge University. At university he has set-up a podcast called Chat with George, interviewing various people including Baroness Natalie Bennett and Baroness Sally Morgan. Since lock-down George has become increasingly interested in UK food and agricultural policy which has led him to write a number of pieces for West England Bylines and for the Young Fabians on this. He advocates for government leadership in rebuilding our food systems and a change in the structures governing the food system, with him emphasising the need for a holistic approach to food.
For the last couple of months I have been immersed in university final exams, preventing me from writing or paying much attention to current affairs. Despite this, I still saw how quickly the Australian Trade Deal went from being publicly debated to being signed off in June with total disregard for the interests of UK […]
Our food system does not work for our health, our environment, and our society, but it has ensured that most of us have food on the table, day in and day out. Is change coming?
Rural communities are a small proportion of our society, with only 17% of people living in rural areas in the UK, including myself. However isolation and loneliness are real issues for many in these communities. The pandemic has highlighted this isolation further and our post-Covid recovery offers a clear opportunity to tackle these issues. The […]
We can feed ourselves with healthy food, and we need to start doing so. That was the clear message from the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission’s latest report, Farming for Change. The report stated that ‘we can grow enough healthy food for a future 2050 UK population’, but in order to do this we must […]
In spite of some ropey internet connection and little chance to give a full speech, Luke Pollard MP stated very clearly that food must become more political. Pollard is the Labour MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport and the Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. He was speaking at the forward-looking […]
The Students Organising for Sustainability’s (SOS-UK) statement, ‘Why banning beef is not the answer’ has finally opened up a more productive conversation about sustainable food policies within universities. SOS-UK published its statement on Thursday, 22 November. This is one of the first attempts by any university-centred organisation or institution to break the static narrative, where […]
Since last Sunday I have had my eyes glued to this very screen in which I am now endeavouring to write this piece. Whilst physically I have crossed from the West of England to the East and am back within the brick walls of my university accommodation, most of my classes languish on the virtual […]
Mo Mowlam once said that “it’s the real life of people that needs change”, and yet we see with this government that it’s not the ‘real life of people’ but the structures of government and the authorities, that apparently need ‘change’. Whilst structural reform can help to improve the delivery of changes for people, there […]
Whilst the ‘Sir Humphrey’ image of the civil service is one that has frequently gained accolades from those in politics – including Margaret Thatcher – it is the politicians giving those accolades who should be at the centre of public concern as regards the way government operates: for them ‘Yes, Minister’ seems an accurate depiction […]
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs – better-known in Whitehall as ‘DEFRA’ – may not be a departmental name that rolls regularly off the tip of the tongue – though its influence on our daily lives is far-reaching. It has oversight over the food we eat, the air we breathe and the water […]