The Soil Association has shown support the EFRA committee’s report on the future for food, farming and the environment.

Emma Hockridge, head of policy at Soil Association said: “We strongly support the committee’s recommendation that public health be recognised and rewarded as a public good in the context of agricultural payments – public health should be one of the defined ‘purposes’ of the Agriculture Bill and should be integrated into all food and farming policy.

"In practical terms, that should include an end to the routine, preventative use of antibiotics in farming, more support for British and organic fruit and vegetable production, and harnessing the full power of public procurement to create new local markets for British farmers and ensure school children and hospital patients are provided with healthier, higher quality, sustainably produced food.

“We also welcome the committee’s recognition that farmers urgently need more clarity on the detail of future policy. As one part of that, we want to see a bold commitment to the UK becoming a world-leader in organic farming. That would benefit nature and the environment, improve animal welfare, and create opportunities for farm businesses to innovate and thrive. It would also help to show that there does not have to be a trade-off between food production and environmental protection.”