British Secretary of the Environment Hilary Benn announced on January 5 long-term agricultural policies to achieve both food security and sustainable farming practices that can mitigate the effects of climate change.
Hilary Benn: Agriculture needs to be at the heart of our efforts to adapt to a changing climate.”
Hilary Benn: The soil, the water, the air, the plants, the forests are the very foundation on which our food and therefore our existence as human beings depends. So in meeting demand today, we must ensure that we do not destroy our ability to feed ourselves tomorrow. It’s not about either environmental sustainability or production, it has to be both.
The plan encourages consumers to eat less red meat and dairy so as to reduce the amount of methane produced by cows, and consume more locally-sourced seasonal fruit and vegetables.
Classes will be offered to teach people how to cook with fresh vegetables. Green labels on food will also display the 'carbon footprint' in manufacturing and transporting products. Secretary Benn highlighted the importance of consumer involvement in achieving a sustainable food system during every phase.
For example, every household would collect food waste to be composted, and more people would grow fruits and vegetables, with gardens also being planted at schools and hospitals along with courses to teach crop growing skills.
Your Excellency and United Kingdom, we applaud your vision for a sustainable future by making sound food choices. May many other leaders be similarly inspired to bring greater health to fellow citizens and the planet. Supreme Master Ching Hai has frequently spoken of the need for governments to implement wiser, plant-based food policies to reduce global warming, as in an interview published in the September 2009 edition of the British Parliament's The House Magazine.