CLA Midlands welcomes first major review of UK food system for 75 years  

28 June 2019

CLA Midlands Director Mark Riches






CLA Midlands Director Mark Riches “I would encourage everyone in the food chain to take part [in this review]”


The CLA in the Midlands has welcomed the announcement by Defra of the first major review of the UK food system in nearly 75 years. The review will investigate the entire food system from field to fork and will result in a new National Food Strategy to be published in 2020.

The review is being led by Henry Dimbleby, co-founder of restaurant chain Leon, the charity Chefs in Schools and of the Sustainable Restaurant Association. He is a familiar figure to the CLA and was the keynote speaker at the association’s National Rural Business Conference in Westminster last December.

CLA Midlands regional director Mark Riches said: “I wholeheartedly agree with Henry when he says that no part of our economy matters more than food. At last year’s CLA conference, he encouraged delegates to think not just about how to make a business succeed, but to stay rooted in core values and clear social objectives.  

“Our members are ready and well placed to help the review shape a system that is economically, socially and environmentally sustainable and also delivers safe and affordable food that is wanted by the consumer.

“It will be a challenge, but I would encourage everyone involved in the food chain to take part to ensure that the National Food Strategy is based on sound evidence if it is to benefit this and future generations. It is also an opportunity to showcase our industry, which I believe already has the best welfare and environmental standards in the world.”

  • To get involved with the strategy visit
  • The full terms of reference for the review are on GOV.UK 
  • In the Defra announcement, Henry Dimbleby said: “No part of our economy matters more than food. It is vital to life and shapes our sense of identity. But there are urgent challenges with which we must grapple. Populations are growing, diet-related conditions are harming the lives of millions, and climate change is altering what our land will yield.”