Nation must protect food production areas

EDITOR – With reference to Donna Nook, some people really need a reality transplant.

First of all, to put it crudely, this country’s skint.

With a national debt of around £1,000 billion, we still have to borrow over £150 billion every year, just to keep the wolf from the door.

Were this country a business, we’d have gone into receivership years ago. And despite tax increases and so-called ‘cuts’ both Government spending and borrowing are higher this year and so our debt will increase year by year, with no end in sight.

Worryingly, it’s also difficult to specify any area of our economy that will generate sufficient wealth in the future to make any real difference to our financial situation.

With the pound already losing its value compared to other currencies, a nightmare situation could arise where those who lend us our billions will start to take fright, anticipating a default or devaluation and demand either exorbitant interest rates – or not lend (or buy our gilts) at all.

Just look around any supermarket and imagine the empty shelves if we lacked the capital to buy from foreign markets.

We’ve organised matters so that we certainly can’t feed ourselves, and with a combination of rapacious supermarkets, an idiotic CAP and cheap imports, not only have we become more dependent on food imports over the past decades, but thousands of our farmers have given up farming, unable to earn a living wage.

Less dependence on food imports would not only help our balance of payments plight, but ease another little concern that everyone has noticed, internationally – food isn’t cheap any more.

Worldwide, food prices have risen dramtically, causing food riots in many countries.

With a finite amount of food for sale and now many countries in the market from the growers, food prices can only increase.

Another area where we have our head in the sand is concerning our future population figures. The UK birth rate grew by half a million last year, the highest in half a century.

Three years ago it was disclosed that England was the most densely populated country in the world – think there will still be enough food available then to feed them all?

It should by now be obvious to all that every acre of horticultural land available for food production in this country is vital, priceless, and should be preserved at all costs.

I’m afraid there will be precious few tweety birds left in Donna Nook in the future when hordes descend on the place seeking something edible to stave off starvation.

John Phelan

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