Priorities for the UK food and drink industry – competitiveness, supply chains and trade

Date: 13 December 2018


United Kingdom


This conference will be a timely opportunity to examine the direction of policy and what it means for the UK’s food, drink and farming sector at a time of significant change and uncertainty.

The discussion

Competitiveness – latest thinking on promoting and protecting UK brands globally – including developing trade with evolving markets such as China;
Support – what is needed by the industry, across the UK, to adapt to any regulatory changes following the UK’s exit from the European Union – including for SMEs;
Workforce – ensuring the sector has access to the workforce it needs, with the right skills and that it is seen as an attractive career destination;
Research – examining the Sector Deal and other mechanisms to provide support with investment and commercialisation of world-leading UK food research and innovation;
Supply chain management – improving transparency, safeguarding standards and contingency planning for cross-channel capacity and Irish border issues;
Sustainability – engaging the food industry and the public with land management and stewardship options in the context of developing UK environmental policy and international commitments; and
International relationships and trade – the impact of any future tariffs and checks on exporting agri-food businesses, customs requirements on importing businesses following the UK’s exit from the European Union; learning from Australia’s diverse exporting experience and particular emerging issues for the meat and live exports sector.


Government no-deal guidance papers in areas including pesticides, GM products, exporting animal products, breeding animals, fishing and food labelling regulations;
Findings and recommendations from the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee on The impact of Brexit on the processed food and drink sector;
The development of a Sector Deal by the Food and Drink Sector Council – focusing on exports and innovation;

The recently published Fisheries Bill, which includes proposals on access to fish in UK waters, fishing opportunities and quotas and protection of the marine environment;
The Agriculture Bill, which includes measures to increase transparency in the supply chain and proposes a move towards a system of payment for ‘public goods’ – such as environmental and animal welfare standards – over the agricultural transition period in England between 2021 and 2027; and
The independent review on factors that should determine future distribution of agriculture funding between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.


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