05 Mar 2024
by Oli Hill

AIC manifesto sets out food supply chain asks ahead of 2024 General Election


In readiness for a General Election, the Agricultural Industries Confederation (AIC) has launched its manifesto outlining three key asks of the next UK Government on behalf of the agri-food supply chain.

AIC - the agri-supply trade association - represents 230 businesses in the animal feed, crop protection and agronomy, fertiliser, grain trading and seed sectors within the supply chains that feed the nation.

These businesses supply UK farmers and growers with the products, trusted advice and quality services that are essential to producing food, as well as trading crops and commodities across the globe.

Key asks of Government

AIC is asking the next UK Government to:

  1. Deliver on the "Powering Productivity for Sustainable UK Food Security" report recommendation of an independent UK Food Security Committee, a move which has gathered widespread support from farming unions, politicians and academics since the report's launch at AIC Conference in November 2023
  2. Improve trade by addressing policy divergence between the UK and EU, as well as within the UK home nations
  3. Standardise sustainability metrics, ensuring that UK agriculture is not disadvantaged

These core asks have been developed following consultation with AIC's Members and Committees over the past year.

See AIC's General Election priorities in detail below, visit the General Election 2024 webpage or click below to download a PDF copy of AIC's 2024 General Election manifesto.

Download AIC's 2024 General Election manifesto

Valuable part of food supply chain

Robert Sheasby, AIC's Chief Executive, said: "In anticipation of a General Election this year, AIC has developed its manifesto priorities to tell MPs and prospective parliamentary candidates what agri-supply businesses need from the next UK Government.

"The agri-supply sector is a fundamental part of the wider food supply chain, supplying farmers and growers with the essential products, trusted advice and quality services they need in order to feed the nation.

"AIC's key asks are to deliver on the “Powering Productivity for Sustainable UK Food Security” report recommendation of an independent UK Food Security Committee, to address policy divergence between the UK and EU, as well as within the UK home nations, and for standardisation of sustainability metrics."

For more commentary, read Robert Sheasby's blog post on AIC's General Election priorities by clicking below.

AIC’s Election 2024 priorities: What we need from the next UK Government


A comprehensive, cohesive UK Government approach to our food security and land use

What we do with our land resource, and the food we produce with it matters for our economy, our productivity, our environment, and our people. Unlike other countries, the UK lacks a joined-up, cross-Government strategy on land use or food security.

To make long term, strategic planning decisions, businesses need to be clear on the next Government’s vision for our land and the role of food producers within it.


Improve trade with the EU, and within the UK nations

AIC needs the next Government to address the barriers that have arisen because of the UK-EU trade agreement have made goods harder to import and export.

UK regulatory bodies are struggling with the implementation of this, and burdens are leading to costly delays and extra paperwork to trade in goods. This is also impacting the UK internal market, opening up inconsistencies in legislation across the four nations.

  • Actively track and monitor divergences in policies and standards between the UK and EU, and within England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Currently there is no formal policy or mechanism established by the UK Government to monitor or track the growing policy divergences between the UK and EU, with trade bodies and businesses left to undertake this crucial work themselves.
  • Negotiate a functioning veterinary or “Sanitary/Phytosanitary (SPS)” agreement with the EU. This would allow goods to be traded more easily with the EU and with Northern Ireland, while respecting the UK’s independence in trade and legislation.

A consistent approach to sustainability in the food supply chain

Sustainability credentials are being requested at product and business level from consumers and supply chains. Access to consistent and accurate information is vital to build credibility and confidence in claims made alongside fairness in the food system.

  • AIC is asking the next Government to help facilitate this work and ensure UK agriculture is not disadvantaged.
  • To deliver a net zero transition in our food supply chain, the next Government must commit to a blended public and private finance landscape including tax credits and green transition support. Other countries have made this investment already, and the UK risks being left behind.

Notes for editors

The Agricultural Industries Confederation (AIC) is the UK’s leading agricultural supply trade association, representing agricultural supply chain sectors including arable marketing, crop protection, agronomy, feed, fertiliser, and seed. 

Formed in 2003, AIC has over 230 Members in the agri-supply trade which are responsible for £17.8 billion of annual farm trade.

Political lobbying and policy influencing is a major part of its work, as well as supporting Members with technical information.  

AIC Services, which is the professional services arm of the AIC, manages a range of services, including Assurance Schemes recognised by the UK Government as essential tools to underpin feed and food safety alongside fertiliser security. These include:  

Visit the AIC website to find out more.

Press contact 

Oli Hill, Communications Manager, AIC 
+44 (0)1733 385230
[email protected]


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Oli Hill

Oli Hill

Communications Manager, AIC

As Communications Manager, Oli creates and oversees the content published on AIC's website, emails, Member briefings, print publications, and social media.

A qualified multimedia journalist, he previously spent six years working at Farmers Weekly magazine as a Senior Reporter on the arable team, and latterly as Community Editor. More recently he was Communications Manager at Red Tractor.

[email protected]
01733 385230

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