Why we’re not so sweet on industrial agriculture
Date: 23 April 2015
The Land Workers’ Alliance (LWA) will be marching from Bury St Edmunds to the British Sugar factory on April 29 from 1pm-4pm. The LWA is a coalition of producers across the UK who are fed up with the un-level state of affairs between corporate and small-scale farming. Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir will be joining for song, dance and street theatre to support LWA to reclaim our food system!
Changes to agricultural policy, intensified under the coalition government, have resulted in unfair support and a skewed market that encourages production on large-scale industrial farms at the cost of smaller-scale alternatives. British Sugar PLC is a symbol of how broken our current food system is. It is a subsidiary of Associated British Foods, a company worth £12.9 billion that controls all of the sugar beet production in the UK.
Bob Sheppard, an LWA member from Sussex, argues, “We want to see a subsidy system that supports farmers who want to get away from big industrial monocultures. You can’t grow organic sugar beet in this country and get it processed, and for the beet that is grown, all the profits end up with ABF shareholders anyway. We want the profits to go to local communities.” Among other policy recommendations, the LWA are pushing for a National Food Policy that prioritizes feeding people and not the profit margins of food corporations like British Sugar. They are also campaigning for Common Agricultural Policy reform advocating for a €150,000 cap on payments.
Join the land workers and march at Bury St Edmunds next Wednesday. There’s a free coach heading from London and Bristol – Click here for more info
Photo: Andrew Stawarz