Smarter use of technology, better regulation of pesticides, and farmers’ concerns post-Brexit were on the agenda when two of the most influential women in agriculture met in Brussels.
Anthea McIntyre, recently-appointed Conservative agriculture spokesman in the European Parliament, welcomed Minette Batters, who became the first female President of the National Farmers Union in February.
They discussed the parliament’s new Pesticides Committee, formed following the chaos surrounding an eventual licence-renewal in December for the widely-used weedkiller glyphosate.
Miss McIntyre, MEP for the West Midlands, is co-ordinator on the committee for the Euopean Conservatives and Reformists Group, and is determined to ensure future law-making is based on the best scientific advice and not on unsubstantiated scaremongering.
The two also discussed Miss McIntyre’s work to promote wider application of new technologies in farming to boost food security and sustainability.
Miss McIntyre said: “Minette and I were in complete agreement that much more notice needs to be taken of science and the experience of farmers themselves when new regulations are being drawn up.
“We also stressed the need for a Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme post-Brexit and the importance, to our farmers, of maintaining trading relationships and frictionless borders for trade with the EU.”