Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, today facilitated a meeting between Scotland Office Ministers and an NFUS delegation to discuss vital issues for Scottish farmers including the workings of the Groceries Code Adjudicator. Scotland Office Ministers Iain Stewart MP and Lord Offord welcomed the delegation, and there was a broad agreement that more could be done to rebalance the economic relationship between food producers and supermarket groups.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Carmichael said:
“It is vitally important that farmers and food producers in Scotland have a direct line to government in order to raise issues of concern, and so I was glad to be able to support and facilitate the meeting with the ministers today.
“It was a useful meeting to have. There was a general agreement between the NFUS delegation and the ministers that there is scope to rebalance the relationship between food producers and the major supermarkets, and that the Groceries Code Adjudicator has to be part of that rebalancing effort. The next step will be in making the case in Parliament and in government with ministers in DEFRA and the Treasury and I hope that the Scotland Office will continue to be a supportive force in this regard.
“With the country facing a cost-of-living crisis and inflation running high, it is vital that we ensure a fair deal for farmers and consumers. These are challenging times for everyone and we cannot allow short-term thinking on farming livelihoods to create a long-term decline in UK agriculture.”