The new year brings many opportunities, chief among them being the challenge of negotiating a good Brexit deal for the pig industry, according to National Pig Association chairman Richard Lister.
“We will continue to work closely with the relevant departments and ensure they are well informed and supported throughout the negotiations,” he said.
The NPA will also be working closely with all retailers to champion British pork and the Red Tractor, supporting and creating supply chain opportunities wherever possible, he added.
Other NPA activities in 2018 will include a spring banner campaign to reinforce the positive qualities of British pork, developing a comprehensive incursion support network to help producers targeted by activists and fighting proposed increases to environmental charges.
“Proposals on charging increases by the EA will be strongly challenged on behalf of those producers potentially affected as this presents yet another barrier to competitiveness,” Richard said.
“Without doubt 2018, will present many and varied challenges, but I am confident the NPA team will continue to deliver to the highest standards.
“I would like to wish all our members a fantastic Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2018.”
In her New Year message, NPA chief executive Zoe Davies looked back into the history of the NPA to highlight why the British pig industry starts 2018 in a relatively strong position.
“Thanks to the efforts of a few stalwarts, the pig industry is still well regarded by many within the halls of Government and seen as a progressive ‘can do’ sector that is light years ahead of many,” she wrote. “We were also seen as worthy adversaries by many retailers too – although happy to report that these days our relationship is far more productive, if still a little frustrating at times.”
If it hadn’t been for all the negotiation and relationship building in the dark old days, we certainly wouldn’t have half the influence that we do now and we are working hard to build on that, especially as we move into the transition phase of Brexit.
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