Resource Kit

“First it’s exit the Corn Laws (1846), then it’s Brexit (2016). Now what?”

16th Nov 16, Editor

Food Thinkers Tim Lang

Professor of food policy at City university Tim Lang's Food Thinkers lecture, looks at the impact of the Brexit win on the British food and farming industry

Professor Tim Laing looks at the impact of the Brexit win on the British food and farming industry.

In this talk Professor Tim Laing discusses how the 2016 Referendum vote to leave the EU almost certainly heralds one of the most important periods of transition for British food and farming since industrialisation. The Brexit vote is seen as on a par with momentous events such as the Repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846 which halted tariff barriers on imported food and, much like Brexit, was the culmination of a decades-long fight. It’s also compared to World Wars 1 and 2 which exposed Britain’s dangerously low food self-sufficiency and persuaded the state and industry to reintroduce a more home-producing food policy.

This Food Thinkers lecture will outline:
(a) ‘hot’ issues such as food standards, reliance on external labour force, types of food;
(b) the institutional capacities of the UK State, important for the negotiations themselves;
(c) the battle for hearts and minds of consumers in the Brexit narrative; and
(d) the tasks facing British academics and civil society.

Tim Lang is professor of food policy at City university and co-author with Erik Millstone of The Atlas of Food. He is land use commissioner on the Sustainable Development Commission and co-author of the SDC's 'Green, Healthy and Fair' report