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November 18, 2020

UK’s ‘green industrial revolution” plan criticised for absence of food objectives

An environmental not-for-profit organisation has criticised a new ten-point "green industrial revolution" plan unveiled by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson today (18 November).

By Dean Best

An environmental not-for-profit organisation has criticised a new ten-point “green industrial revolution” plan unveiled by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson today (18 November) for not having any provisions for food.

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What’s the forecast for the food and grocery industry?

The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
Assess developments within this sector to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

The initiative is geared toward making progress on reaching the UK’s target for zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and includes a GBP12bn (US$15.9bn) government investment to “create and support up to 250,000 highly-skilled green jobs in the UK, and spur over three times as much private-sector investment by 2030”. 

But food is absent from the objectives revealed today, which are primarily centred around wind farms, housing, electric vehicles, public transport, nature and technology.

Sustain, the London-based agency promoting health and wellness for people and animals, along with environmental issues, headed up its response with the caption, “where is food?”

“We are concerned that the plan completely fails to tackle emissions from the food and farming system, even though food production is the single greatest threat to the health of our planet, and actions to address this bring good jobs and would help make our food system more resilient,” it said in a statement.

Ruth Westcott, a climate change campaign coordinator at Sustain, added: “It is of course very welcome to see action from the Prime Minister on climate change, but astonishing and disappointing that there are no proposals to tackle emissions from food growing, production, manufacturing, and our diets. The evidence is clear, we can’t limit warming to 1.5 degrees or achieve net-zero without addressing food.”  

She said the government must do more to promote a healthy diet that is low in meat and dairy but high in fruits and vegetables, and discourage consumption of “ultra-processed food”.

“The government promised in their manifesto to support more top-standard British growers and producers through public food but this is completely missing from today’s proposals,” Westcott said.

Sustain pointed out that food production accounts for 20-30% of global emissions, adding “our diets and farming practices combined are probably the greatest overall threat to the health of our planet”. 

Meanwhile, the Food & Drink Federation (FDF), which represents UK manufacturers in those categories, said its members will need “clear direction” on the path forward.

Emma Piercy, the head of climate change and energy policy at the FDF, said: “As the UK’s largest manufacturing sector, the food and drink industry is absolutely committed to a green recovery post Covid-19 and achieving the government’s net-zero carbon target by 2050.

“We have identified a clear pathway, but the changes required to manufacturing processes and energy supply systems are so significant, businesses will need clear direction and support in partnership with Government and other stakeholders to make that transition.”

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Free Report
img

What’s the forecast for the food and grocery industry?

The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
Assess developments within this sector to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

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