The purpose of the National Food Strategy is to set out a vision on how to build a future food system that addresses environmental and health challenges, ensures the security of our food supply, and maximises the benefits of technology, with a plan for how to achieve that vision. 

We are working with our members and key stakeholders to inform the National Food Strategy for England. This includes engagement on the Independent Review led by Henry Dimbleby, working with the Food and Drink Sector Council (FDSC) to develop an industry report, and engaging with Defra on the strategy itself which is due to be published in early 2022.

Feeding the Future: Working together to build the National Food Strategy

The FDSC, an industry-led board which represents the formal partnership between UK Government and the food and drink industry, has published its report ‘Feeding the Future: Working together to build the National Food Strategy’.

The collaborative report sets out the food and drink industry’s contribution to the UK Government’s forthcoming National Food Strategy as well as the Council’s clear vision, ambition and solutions to accelerate the transition to a food system of the future.

This report addresses the key challenges of increasing productivity, raising skills, investing in innovation and technology, improving sustainability, and enabling healthier diets.  To deliver the industry’s vision for 2030, the report calls for a strong partnership between industry and the governments in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast, building on existing collaboration, to effectively deliver a coherent food policy across Whitehall departments and Devolved Administrations.

Our views on Henry Dimbleby’s Independent Review

  • The FDF welcomed the publication of Henry Dimbleby’s interim report in 2020.
  • Subsequently Henry Dimbleby has published his Independent Review, which we have recognised as an important contribution to inform the wider conversation around the future of the UK’s food and drink industry.
  • We welcome the intent to bring forward measures which will help to increase access and affordability of food and drink for children and families on lower incomes.
  • We firmly oppose the proposals for a sugar and salt tax, which will not help to reduce obesity, and will only increase the cost of food for families – particularly those on lower incomes.

Our response to the National Food Strategy Part II report was covered in all trade and a majority of the national papers including BBC News, Financial Times, The Times, Daily Mail, The Mirror, Metro and Express. Our Letter to the Editor was also published in the Times and re-emphasised our arguments against the so called 'snack tax'.

Our media statement: National Food Strategy Part II Report - Update

What’s next?

The Government is currently in the process of developing the Food Strategy for England, due to be published in early 2022. This will be informed by Henry Dimbleby’s independent review, as well as inputs from the wider stakeholder community. We expect the Strategy to reflect on a broad array of issues including; growth and prosperity; labour and skills; sustainability and food waste; diet and health; and the role of Government. The Strategy will also consider cross-cutting issues such as data and legislation.

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Latest updates

FDF Event: National Food Strategy – Discussing the Future of Food and Drink

Update

The FDF hosted its first National Food Strategy event online with over 200 attendees from the industry. We heard from FDSC Food Strategy Co-Chair and Nestlé UK and Ireland CEO Stefano Agostini, FDF CEO and FDSC Co-Chair Ian Wright, DEFRA’s Head of Food Strategy Laura Chapman, and UK Politics and Policy Lead Alex Dawson from Global Counsel – who were commissioned by the FDSC to deliver its report.

We had a lively debate about how the National Food Strategy must address short term challenges in the food industry and help the sector transition to focus on longer term goals. We also had a panel discussion specifically looking at how the National Food Strategy could support higher productivity in the food sector and contribute towards the Government’s Levelling Up agenda – with ABF’s Head of Government Affairs & Policy Ian Mace and FDF Professional Affiliate members RSM and European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) Food.

If you missed the event, you can catch up here or download via FDF’s podcast.

Report: Feeding the Future: Working together to build the National Food Strategy

08 October 2021

The Food and Drink Sector Council offers food chain solutions as part of the industry’s contribution to the UK Government’s forthcoming National Food Strategy.

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