29 December 2000
Gill: Its easy to feel like giving up

by FWi staff

FARM leader Ben Gill has admitted that its easy to feel like giving up farming in the face of increasing globalisation and the opening up of world markets.

In a New Year message, the president of the National Farmers Union says optimism at the start of the New Millennium preceded one of the worst ever years.

” So what of 2001?,” he asks. “In the face of the increasing globalisation and the opening up of world markets it is easy to feel like giving up.”

Mr Gill says this time round there are glimmers of hope that at long last suggest we might have seen the worst.

“Forecasts from the Organisation for Economic Development and Co-operation predict prices will firm in most major commodities.

“Good news, but to make sure we get the benefits we need to translate this into results for ourselves and not let it be absorbed in the middle of the chain.

“We must keep on returning power to producers through working together.

Effective marketing of our products is essential and branding such as the British Farm Standard is crucial and gives hope for the future, says Mr Gill.

“Another welcome sign is that the Euro is beginning to strengthen against sterling. It always seemed to be out of line, and a more normal rate will help us enormously.

Mr Gill insists that the industrys fight for de-regulation is beginning to pay off.

“The recent Better Regulation Taskforce report bore out all the NFU has said about the crippling effects of red tape,” he says.

Mr Gill concludes: “For our part we need to show that we can meet the challenge of change and turn it to our advantage.

“Our role in society, the environment and the economy is vital. We must make sure that it is sustainable.”