Rosie Cooper Labour West Lancashire, in Parliament 21February 2019
“To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the need (a) for more and (b) to use more existing Grade 1 agricultural land for agricultural purposes in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal”.
George Eustice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
“The Best and Most Versatile (BMV) agricultural land is classed as grade 3b and above. Most arable and vegetable crops can be grown on grade 3 soils and above. Top fruit crops tend to require grade 1 or grade 2 land. Most grade 1 land in the UK is already under agricultural production.
“The UK gets its food from different sources including strong domestic production and imports from the EU and beyond. We will still have a high level of food security whether we leave the EU with or without a deal and our future agriculture policy will allow farmers to continue providing a supply of healthy, home-grown produce made to high environmental and animal welfare standards”.
The problem is, Mr Eustice, that the Tory party is in hock to greenbelt developers for the political donations it receives. And more agricultural land will disappear for easy housing development, more developer profits, and less food grown. Why not just admit it?