Caroline Spelman's video link...
Tim Young - 09 February 2011
...seems to have split opinion on the conference floor. My fellow blogger Ed Dowding has just called it 'disappointingly political', while one of the Omsco representatives (I think Huw Bowles, but don't quote me) was much more positive. Perhaps the best comment was from panellist Jan Hutchinson, who thought the Secretary of State was setting a new record for simultaneous smiling and talking.
For mine, it was great to hear from the Minister the recognition that organic farmers were pioneers, whom the whole sector should learn from, and the announcement that the new Government would bring in procurement standards for govt departments, which would include a portion of sustainable food. Though, on the debit side I thought Caroline's insistence on the 'flexibility' needed to respond to the challenges of future farming in a resource depleted world probably concealed a desire to promote the kind of bio-tech solutions that lots of us would prefer to avoid.
The devil of course will be in the detail - so you can make your own mind up - watch it here.
Tim is editor of the Soil Association's Living Earth magazine, and has written on food, health and consumer issues for the last ten years. When not at work Tim is normally being run ragged by his two young sons. In 2009 Tim started trying to grow vegetables, and last year he took on an allotment. Two years later he is still trying to grow vegetables, and is very hopeful that one day soon he will have some success.
13 February 2011 15:58
Totally agree with John Walker, lets give her the award!
09 February 2011 19:51
I've watched the video. Oh dear. Perhaps the SA could instigate a very special award and honour Caroline Spelman with it.
Most Insincere Politician of the Year?
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