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Unsupportive goverment policies jeopardizing foundation of UK food security

UK farmers stage massive tractor rally at parliament.Demonstrators raise their voices against tide of cheap food imports and what they see as unsupportive gov’t policies jeopardizing foundation of UK food security.Farmers made their way towards Britain’s parliament on Monday in a convoy of more than 120 tractors to protest post-Brexit rules which they believe put food security at risk.The convoy, organized by the campaign groups Save British Farming and Fairness for Farmers of Kent, flooded the capital's streets.The demonstrators raised their voices against the tide of cheap food imports and what they see as unsupportive governmental policies jeopardizing the very foundation of the country’s food security.A sea of Union flags fluttering atop the tractors was joined by banners emblazoned with slogans such as “Save British farming” and “No farming, no food, no future.”

"We are totally fed up with the government. This one is particularly bad, taking us for granted and really just leaving us to fend for ourselves, and our businesses are under stress," Liz Webster, from Save British Farming

"We have a trade bloc between us and our biggest market in Europe. But also, they ended up leaving Britain as an unfair, unlevel playing field, in that we have trade barriers," Webster asserted, highlighting the disparities that have plagued British farmers in the wake of Brexit.

She said the absence of equitable trade regulations has allowed goods of lower standards to flood the UK market, undercutting locally produced goods and threatening the livelihoods of farmers nationwide.Webster lamented the consequences of this unequal competition, pointing to supermarkets' preference for cheaper imports over domestically sourced products, which has resulted in farmers being pushed out of business and contractual obligations being disregarded.

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"We want them to devise a food plan," Webster said, emphasizing the need for a comprehensive strategy to support British agriculture in the face of mounting challenges.

She criticized the 2020 Agriculture Act for its scant emphasis on food production, accusing policymakers of prioritizing environmental concerns at the expense of the farming community's interests.David Figgis, a farmer among the throngs of demonstrators at the London tractor rally, expressed the collective frustration of UK farmers, highlighting the pressing issues that have pushed agricultural communities to the brink.

"We're not making enough money," Figgis said, encapsulating the financial struggles plaguing farmers across the nation.

He attributed this hardship to the influx of imported goods grown to different standards yet permitted entry into the UK market. He also underscored the disparity in regulations between the UK and the rest of Europe, citing instances where banned chemicals and higher carbon emissions are still permitted in connection with products imported from other regions."Tractors with different carbon emissions and chemicals that have been banned from Europe for maybe 30 years are still used in other parts of the world, and then the products are shipped into Britain. So that's one of the major complaints," Figgis said, pointing to the lax enforcement of environmental standards in imported agricultural products."We're not going to stop eating. So where are we going to get the food from? Continue grubbing Brazil and shipping it across the Atlantic and that's better for the environment?" he said, highlighting the need for comprehensive, forward-thinking solutions to address the intertwined challenges of food security and environmental conservation.

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